Google Voice: How Apple Further Appblocks Google
Article by George Norman
On 29 Jul 2009
Google Voice, the service that puts all your phone numbers into one Google number, has been released for Android and Blackberry smartphones, but not for iPhones. And you can thank Apple for this. Google worked on a Google Voice app and submitted it to Apple, but the Cupertino-based company said “no thank you” and blocked the app citing the fact that it duplicates “features that come with the iPhone”. Apple then went one step further and kicked unofficial Google Voice apps out of the store as well – apps like GV Mobile for example, which you can still get for free on Cydia (you must have a jailbroken iPhone).

A Google spokesperson confirmed the info that Apple rejected the official Google Voice app, while noting that the app in question was submitted for review six weeks ago. “We work hard to bring Google applications to a number of mobile platforms, including the iPhone. 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,” said a Google spokesperson for TechCrunch.


Apple on the other hand has not provided any official statements, so we don’t know for sure why it rejected the app, or why it went after similar apps from the App Store and kicked them out. Rumor on the web has it that AT&T is behind it all. Because you can make low-priced international calls and send free SMS messages via Google Voice, carriers like AT&T feel threatened by the situation. And since Google Voice pulls all your phone numbers under a single Google Voice number (people call that Google Voice number and the call is directed to the number of your choice), you could easily leave a carrier behind without having to worry that people will not be able to contact you.

Now a little explanation on the title: when one of your friends prevents you from going home with the beautiful girl you just met, you say that he cockblocked you, or that he is a cockblocker. Apple blocks Google from putting out useful apps, hence the “appblocks” part of the title. And I said “further appblocks” because Apple recently told Google that a native Google Latitude iPhone app is not to its liking; consequently Google rolled out a Google Latitude web app for the iPhone.

Tags: Apple, iPhone, Google, Google Voice, App Store
About the author: George Norman
George is a news editor.
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