The FCC wants to know why Apple rejected a Google Voice iPhone app that is already letting thousands of BlackBerry users happily avoid the egregious charges that wireless carriers like AT&T sock you with for talking and texting.
The Google Voice app allows you to do these things for free. For obvious reasons, that scares the bejesus out of AT&T. So the theory is that AT&T ordered Apple to reject the app to help preserve its ability to extort you.
It will be interesting to read the email traffic that led to this Apple decision. Hopefully it will also shed more light on Apple’s general app-approval process, which has prompted increasing frustration in recent months.
Hopefully it will also mark the beginning of the end of US wireless carriers’ stranglehold over innovation in mobile communications.
Reed Abelson, NYT: The Federal Communications Commission is examining a recent decision by Apple to reject an iPhone application developed by Google. On Friday, the commission sent letters to executives at Apple, Google and AT&T, which is the exclusive carrier for the iPhone in the United States, saying it was “interested in a more complete understanding of this situation.”
In opening the investigation, the F.C.C. cited an article in The New York Times this week describing Google’s frustration in winning approval from Apple to distribute its iPhone applications through Apple’s App Store. Apple recently rejected Google’s effort to bring a service called Google Voice to the iPhone, and the company also rescinded its earlier approval of several applications created by third-party developers that worked with Google Voice.
In its letter to Apple, the F.C.C. asked the company to explain why it rejected the application and removed the related applications from its App Store.
See Also: Apple Rejects Another Google iPhone App
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