US President Donald Trump, while speaking to reporters on Air Force One, announced that TikTok will be banned from the United States.

He said he will act "as soon as Saturday" to ban the Chinese-owned video platform in the US over "security fears".

“As far as TikTok is concerned we’re banning them from the United States", the president said. "Well, I have that authority. I can do it with an executive order or that...[] In other words it’s a severance. It’s a severance".

According to print pooler David Cloud, Trump also said that he would not favor a US company buying TikTok operations. The rest of his comments were off the record.

Earlier, Trump was reportedly mulling the possibility of "a couple of options" regarding TikTok, including a ban. He also said that alternatives to the video platform were being looked into. Before Trump announced his intentions to ban TikTok, The New York Times reported, citing unnamed sources, that Microsoft was in negotiations to buy TikTok from Chinese company ByteDance, with TikTok considering "other scenarios to alleviate concerns by US officials". Among them, the company was considering non-Chinese investors like Sequoia Capital, SoftBank and General Atlantic to buy the app's majority stake from ByteDance.

Reporting on possibilities for TikTok amid US concerns, The NYT said that the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States had decided to order ByteDance to divest TikTok, with the government engaged in talks over the terms of a separation.

Trump also reportedly considered another option, putting TikTok’s parent on a so-called “entity list,” to keep it from purchasing American products and services without a special license. The US president also reportedly mulled introducing an executive order based on the International Emergency Economic Powers Act that allows certain foreign apps to be banned in the US.