Thursday, July 30, 2009

Apple Silences Google Voice On the iPhone

First it was just apps that gave users access to Google Voice features, but now it seems as though even an official app from Google, who have traditionally been very close with Apple, will not (for now) see the light of day. GV Mobile and Voice Central, two apps that allowed Google Voice users to access the service on their iPhone have been pulled from the App Store for duplicating functionality, and an official Google Voice app won’t see release at all for the same reason.

According to a Google spokesperson speaking to TechCrunch, Apple received the app submission from the internet search giant six weeks ago, and “did not approve the Google Voice application.” Apple has bandied about the feature duplication defense before, when they rejected Podcaster prior to releasing their own integrated podcast direct search and download section to the iPhone’s iTunes store.

Unless Apple somehow plans to introduce their own built-in Google Voice support in the near future, a scenario which I find highly unlikely, then this particular use of the feature duplication line is completely ridiculous. Google Voice isn’t actually duplicating anything, it’s only reducing AT&T’s ability to make money, which suggests that the wireless provider has much more control over Apple and their approval process than I previously suspected.

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