On Saturday, Android boss Hiroshi Lockheimer accused Apple of “utilizing peer stress and bullying as a method to promote merchandise,” after a Wall Road Journal report revealed how US teenagers have turned Apple’s iMessage right into a social standing image that locks Android customers out.
Now, Lockheimer is taking a barely much less abrasive stance: the Google government said Monday that “we’re not asking Apple to make iMessage accessible on Android. We’re asking Apple to help the business normal for contemporary messaging (RCS) in iMessage, simply as they help the older SMS / MMS requirements.”
We’re not asking Apple to make iMessage accessible on Android. We’re asking Apple to help the business normal for contemporary messaging (RCS) in iMessage, simply as they help the older SMS / MMS requirements.
— Hiroshi Lockheimer (@lockheimer) January 10, 2022
“By not incorporating RCS, Apple is holding again the business and holding again the consumer expertise for not solely Android customers but additionally their very own prospects,” adds Lockheimer, later within the Twitter thread.
That’s nonetheless an enormous accusation, however one which pulls the dialog again into acquainted territory: will Apple accept Google’s olive branch to make iMessage extra appropriate with Android, or will it proceed to make use of lock-in to promote extra iPhones?
On the lock-in entrance, there’s little query about Apple’s motivation. Due to the Epic v. Apple trial, the world has now seen confidential emails between Apple executives that present the corporate is deliberately withholding iMessage in favor of lock-in. “I’m involved the iMessage on Android would merely serve to take away an impediment to iPhone households giving their children Android telephones,” wrote Apple exec Craig Federighi in April 2013, including “I believe we have to get Android prospects utilizing and depending on Apple merchandise.”
“Joz and I believe transferring iMessage to Android will damage us greater than assist us, this e-mail illustrates why,” wrote Apple’s Phil Schiller in March 2016, forwarding an e-mail from Beats Music co-founder Ian Rogers about how he “missed a ton of messages from family and friends” after switching to an Android telephone.
What’s much less clear is whether or not RCS, the next-gen substitute for SMS that’s championed by Google and incorporates fashionable options frequent to iMessage, has any convincing cause for Apple to signal on. That’s probably why Google is creating slightly peer stress of its personal.
The Verge has requested Apple if it intends to help RCS actually years with no remark, so we’re not holding our breath. We’ve additionally made the ethical case that an organization that claims privateness is a human proper has an obligation to carry encrypted messaging to the world, not simply its personal prospects, and we’ve written concerning the private plight of coping with Apple’s inaction. (And once I say “we”, I imply Dieter, as a result of RCS is his jam, I’m scripting this put up as a result of he’s on trip, and Dieter srsly why are you studying these phrases, aren’t you presupposed to be on a socially distanced seaside someplace?)
However possibly now that Apple is mainly a three-trillion greenback firm, and it’s below a great deal of regulatory scrutiny, and its soiled laundry (within the type of emails) has been aired in entrance of the world, and its workers are talking out, and items just like the WSJ’s are popping out, and its CEO Tim Cook dinner is probably going on the lookout for a legacy bigger than merely scaling up the corporate to turn into probably the most priceless on the planet with a fats pay bundle because the reward… maybe bringing iMessage to Android or RCS to iMessage is the type of small concession that Apple would possibly truly make.
Correction, 7:48PM ET: Dieter informs me Apple did truly reply to our requests for touch upon RCS. Their reply was “No remark.” I remorse the error.