Google Voice is one exciting service by Google. You can essentially do everything under the sun with it, and save yourself a bunch of money as well. As you may know, Google Voice app for iPhone was announced a while ago, and we were all crossing our fingers for Apple to approve the app. Not only Apple did not approve the app, it removed similar apps from iPhone as well. Of course, Apple has an excuse for removing all these apps. These apps clearly (in Apple’s eyes) were providing duplicate functionality to what’s already being offered on iPhone and as such they were removed. Now no one would actually fall for that excuse unless they are blindly in love with Apple. Whether Apple is right or wrong here is not really the point. The fact that at&t exerts so much influence on what app gets approved is scary. There have been many talks about Apple finally ending its exclusive relationship with at&t, and this is another reason to do just that.
The problem is, Google Voice is a threat to a whole lot of carriers. It allows you to send free SMS and save money on long distance calls. So I am not sure this wouldn’t have happened if Apple was working with Verizon instead of at&t. What’s disturbing about this is Apple removing a few other apps that were approved at first. GV Mobile is the prime example here. The app was removed due to same reasons offered for Google Voice’s rejection. Here is what the people behind GVM had to say:
Richard Chipman from Apple just called – he told me they’re removing GV Mobile from the App Store due to it duplicating features that the iPhone comes with (Dialer, SMS, etc). He didn’t actually specify which features, although I assume the whole app in general.
So Apple has gone full martial law on us and is removing anything and everything it deems inappropriate or a threat. People are already calling for these rejected apps to be introduced on Cydia. Consumers always fight back when they are faced with a tyrant company. Apple has always been a bit controlling but this is certainly a new low. And let’s not forget that Google had trouble getting Google latitude on iPhone as well (the native version was not acceptable to Apple). Apple is officially taking side with at&t and against 3rd party innovation. Now that’s truly a sad sight to see.
Your take: is Apple becoming too powerful to respect its customers’ demands?