Google Voice App Issue
Google plans to bypass Apple’s App Store on the Web
By Katie Marsal
Published: 12:40 PM EST
With its native Google Voice application rejected from the iPhone App Store, the software maker is planning a full-featured Web application in its place.
Revealed by David Pogue in The New York Times, Google’s alleged Voice Web application is said to be the “next chapter” in the ongoing dispute between it and Apple.
“Already, Google says it is readying a replacement for the Google Voice app that will offer exactly the same features as the rejected app—except that it will take the form of a specialized, iPhone-shaped Web page,” Pogue writes. “For all intents and purposes, it will behave exactly the same as the app would have; you can even install it as an icon on your Home screen.”
He goes on to question: “What is Apple going to do now? Start blocking access to individual Web sites?”
On Friday, Google declined to comment on Pogue’s column. However, the news reaffirms the browser abilities alluded to in comments from a Google spokesperson last week.
“We work hard to bring Google applications to a number of mobile platforms, including the iPhone,” the spokesperson told AppleInsider. “Apple did not approve the Google Voice application we submitted six weeks ago to the Apple App Store. We will continue to work to bring our services to iPhone users, for example by taking advantage of advances in mobile browsers.”
Weeks ago, Apple rejected the Google Voice application, and pulled two programs that used the Voice service from the App Store. AT&T has denied responsibility in the incident, but it, Google and Apple are under investigation from the Federal Communications Commission over the matter.
Much of the chat here has been about Apple right to do this, and not the implications or reasoning behind their decision. What is the consensus here for the reason Apple pulled the apps? My personal opinion is that is based on some type of agreement with AT&T because I think amazing apps like Google Voice help sell iPhones and it is wonderful news for Apple that Google would want to develop GV as a native app. It would be horrible if Google left apps like GV for Android or other systems and left iPhone in the cold.
Apple pulled the app because:
1. Some type of agreement or potential liability exists if an app hurts T’s network or revenue
2. Apple (or a close partner)is developing an app very similar to GV as well. Apple doesn’t want to give the Google a leg up on this upcoming app
3. Apple sees Google as a growing competitor and this is visible shot in an escalating conflict.
4. It’s just an example of Apple being unable to keep up with the explosive growth of the app store. We know there are bad and inconsistent decisions being made because of the time/resource stress and lack of process maturity—the app will eventually be approved when clearer heads take time to consider the merits of GV.
5. It duplicates too much existing iPhone function
What is the consensus here for the reason Apple pulled the apps?
(a) all of the reasons you quote. (b)100% of Apple’s gross margins on iPhone come from the carrier subsidy. While that business model is in place, it has to be protected.
I’ve called it Apple “not wanting to inadvertently tie its own shoe laces together”. The giant carrier subsidy gives the best model until it doesn’t, and in the big picture, Apple does want that to end. But deploying Google voice without some regulatory clarification of how things are going to play out risks exactly that. And of course Apple wants to create its own core functionality (which GV is) for iPhone and MobileMe before offering 50 million iPhone/iPods to anyone as powerful as Google.
As a european, I’m grateful GV is blocked. Google’s design doesn’t work internationally. (we don’t pay to accept calls/messages, so there’s no revenue to cover the costs of the service). Apple will figure out a way.
arty, thanks for the link. For those with a time budget, the Google/Apple discussion begins about 12:50 into the 31:11 minute interview.
“LOOKS TO ME that this is a win/win for both Apple and Google, as well as iPhone owners around the world. “
I agree the move was a win win solution to both.
[ Edited: 30 September 2009 10:43 PM by DawnTreader ]
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