Warren slams Apple for blocking iMessage access for Android users

Senator Elizabeth Warren accused Apple of abusing its market power and stifling competition by shutting down Beeper, an app that allowed Android users to message iPhone users via iMessage.

Apple Blocks Beeper Mini, the Android App That Promised iMessage Functionality, Citing Security Concerns
Apple Blocks Beeper Mini, the Android App That Promised iMessage Functionality, Citing Security Concerns

Beeper was a service that unified 15 different chat platforms, including iMessage, WhatsApp, Telegram, and Slack. It used a Mac Mini as a bridge to relay messages between Android and iOS devices.

Warren tweeted on Monday that Apple’s move was “unfair and anti-competitive” and called for stronger antitrust enforcement and legislation to break up big tech companies.

“Apple is using its monopoly power to crush small developers and deny consumers choice and convenience. This is why we need to #BreakUpBigTech and restore competition and innovation to the digital marketplace,” she wrote.

Apple has not publicly commented on why it shut down Beeper, but some speculate that it violated its terms of service or posed security risks. Apple’s iMessage is one of its most popular and exclusive features, and it may not want to share it with other platforms.

Beeper was not the only app that claimed to offer iMessage compatibility for Android users. Sunbird, another app backed by Nothing, a new tech company founded by former OnePlus co-founder Carl Pei, was also shut down by Apple last week.

Sunbird’s website stated that it was “the world’s first app to bring iMessage to Android” and that it was “100% secure and private”. However, it also warned that it was “not affiliated with or endorsed by Apple” and that it was “using an exploit that might be fixed in the future”.

The shutdown of Beeper and Sunbird has sparked a debate among users and experts about whether Apple should open up iMessage to other platforms, or whether it has the right to protect its proprietary technology and user privacy.

Source: via | Apple Blocks iMessage Apps for Android, Sparking Antitrust Debate

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