Google tells FCC that Apple did indeed reject Google Voice for the iPhone

Google has disclosed to the U.S. Federal Communications Commission that Apple Inc. earlier this year did indeed reject Google’s Google Voice for iPhone app for inclusion in Apple’s iTunes App Store.

Apple told the FCC last month that it had not rejected the Google Voice for iPhone app. Instead, Apple said it is still studying the app and hasn’t yet made a decision whether to approve or reject the app.

Google’s letter to the FCC states, in part:

Apple’s representatives informed Google that the Google Voice application was rejected because Apple believed the application duplicated the core dialer functionality of the iPhone. The Apple representatives indicated that the company did not want applications that could potentially replaces such functionality… The primary points of contact between the two companies were Alan Eustace, Google Senior Vice President of Engineering & Research, and Phil Schiller, Apple Senior Vice President of Worldwide Product Marketing. On July 7, Mr. Eustace and Mr. Schiller spoke over the phone. It was during this call that Mr. Schiller informed Mr. Eustace that Apple was rejecting the Google Voice application for the reasons described above.

• Google’s letter to the FCC (.pdf) here.
• Apple’s letter to the FCC here.
• AT&T’s letter to the FCC (.pdf) here.

MacDailyNews Take: Oh, goody, somebody’s lying! We wonder if it’s corporate policy for Apple and/or Google to tape such phone calls in anticipation of just such a discrepancy?


  1. Google, in my opinion, is monopolising. If they were being good boys and girls, they would enhance the competition – in their view – by adding such functionality to their own phone software only, and then we’d see what’s good and customer-grabbing and what isn’t, and whether they have a case at all for it even needing to be anywhere.

  2. <b>
    I’m guessing that it was more of Phil saying,”Your product duplicates some of our core functionality and that’s something we’d like to avoid…so it’s not looking likely we would approve it…but to be honest…our engineers are still studying it.”

    Which Google took to mean that it was formally rejected. That’s not the case. Is there some federally mandated period of review for iphone apps? Is there a legal precedent for a “reasonable period of time” for approval?
    No…there isn’t.

    And Google does not have in it’s possession a formal rejection from Apple. They are just trying to turn up the heat by this kind of public disclosure.

  3. Apple could have saved themselves a WHOLE lot of trouble by just accepting that damn app, it’s not like it would have been tremendously popular anyway. Without all this publicity, it probably would have been no more popular than the Google Mobile app that lets you do safari searches via voice commands.

  4. Apple should be able to reject or accept ANY application submitted. The only person they should have to answer to is the public, and at times they have changed course due to public pressure.

    They are an independent commercial business and they have the right to control what goes in the AppStore. If people don’t like it, they can complain to Apple or else boycott buying the iPhone and AppStore apps. Its as simple as that.

    There are other cell phones, other computer makers, and other mobile platforms out there. Apple may have the best one, but that does not mean they should be under pressure to accept apps per the FCC.

  5. Was it that it was informally “rejected” with that functionality in place, but could be accepted if changes are made to the app?

    What’s the definition of “rejected”? We’ve seen plenty of apps that were initially rejected, get approved with changes.

  6. After a little more thought…

    So far this appears to be a case of ‘he said, he said’ from both parties so without tape of the converstation I am no more apt to belive Google than Apple.

    Considering a Google officer sat on Apple’s board while quitely developing competing products and did not at some point recuse himself while taking copious amounts of free gear as compensation, I’d question almost ‘all’ of Google’s motives in this situation.

    And finally, there is no legal mandate that Apple open it’s platform to this type of ‘competition’. The cell phone/smart phone market is overflowing with options and there is no legal basis for Apple to allow competitors into it’s space because they can’t provide a product anyone wants. So if they deny a voice app to duplicate features, they have every right to do that and Google is free to release it on Android, simple as that.

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