Apple’s Targeting Of IMessage-on-Android App Beeper


A recent clash between tech giant Apple and the mobile app Beeper Mini has drawn attention as Apple appears to be deliberately blocking iMessages from being delivered to a portion of Beeper Mini users. However, Beeper claims to have a fix for the issue, instructing users to simply uninstall and reinstall the app. The startup is also working on a broader fix for the problem, which is currently in progress.

Key Takeaway

Apple’s deliberate blocking of iMessages to a portion of Beeper Mini users has sparked a battle between the tech giant and the startup. As Beeper claims to have a fix for the issue, the clash reflects the ongoing challenges associated with bringing iMessage functionality to Android users.

Beeper’s Response to Apple’s Actions

Beeper CEO Eric Migicovsky has revealed that Beeper Cloud is now fixed and Beeper Mini is also “almost fixed.” The startup has been engaged in a heated battle with Apple since the launch of its iMessage-on-Android solution. Beeper introduced an app that allowed Android users to chat with iPhone users using new technology that reverse-engineered the iMessage protocol. This move initially led to a swift reaction from Apple, resulting in the shutdown of Beeper Mini’s operation. However, Beeper managed to roll out a fix, enabling Android users to send iMessages once again, albeit by authenticating with their Apple ID.

Legislative Attention and Security Concerns

Apple’s actions did not go unnoticed, with U.S. Senator Elizabeth Warren criticizing the tech giant for shutting down the app and emphasizing the importance of easy and secure communication between different platforms. While Beeper claims its service is end-to-end encrypted, Apple suggested that its techniques posed a security risk for its users, prompting the company to take steps to protect its users by blocking techniques that exploit fake credentials to gain access to iMessage. This move led to Beeper challenging Apple to agree on a third-party security audit of its service to allay the tech giant’s concerns.

Impact on Beeper’s Business Model

Founded by Pebble smartwatch founder Eric Migicovsky, Beeper originally focused on a multi-service messaging app aggregator but shifted its attention to bringing iMessage to Android users for a monthly fee. Following Apple’s intervention, the startup made its new app free for Android users for the time being, in response to the instability caused by Apple’s actions.

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