Facebook has been officially blocked in China since 2009, and parts of WhatsApp's service were recently blocked within the country's borders. Previously, the Chinese government blocked a number of products from Facebook, Inc.by dint of its Nazi internet policy. Rather than interfacing with Facebook, the app works with the country's biggest social network, WeChat.
"It shows the desperation and frustration of global technology companies in their attempts to penetrate the world's largest online market". China has locked out big tech giants, including Google, from its 700 million internet users. Nevertheless, Silicon Valley corporations barely get access to the Chinese market due to China's strict internet censorship policy.
"We have long said that we are interested in China, and are spending time understanding and learning more about the country in different ways", a Facebook spokesperson said by email.
"Colorful Balloons can group users' phone pictures and videos based on time, locations and characters". Mozur then connected the seemingly-fake company name behind the app to a woman who appeared in a photo of a meeting between Facebook and the Chinese government.
While photos can be shared, Facebook appears to have taken steps to ensure the app could not spread widely.
It's unclear whether Chinese regulators were aware of the app, and it could muddy up the waters even further between tech companies and the country.
It's no secret how badly Facebook wants to take on the Chinese market.
Facebook approved the release in May.