Apple knows that the blue bubbles of iMessage are a major obstacle to people switching to Android, so the service never appeared on Google’s mobile operating system. This is based on testimony and emails from Apple employees, including some senior executives, Epic Games brought to court as part of its legal dispute with the iPhone manufacturer.
Epic suggests that Apple is deliberately trying to lock customers into their device ecosystem, and iMessage is one of the core services that help it do so. Eddy Cue, Apple’s senior vice president of Internet Software and Services, cites comments by Craig Federighi, senior vice president of software engineering, and Phil Schiller, a prominent member of Apple, in support of his argument.
“The # 1 hardest [reason] to leave the Apple app universe is iMessage… iMessage means a serious crash.” said an unnamed former Apple employee in an e-mail message he wrote in 2016. “Moving iMessage to Android will do more harm than help us, this email shows the reason,” Schiller said in a reply to this message. said.
If iMessage came to Android, an obstacle to Android phones would have been removed.
According to Epic’s file to the court, Federighi’s concern was that “iMessage on Android will serve to remove [a] barrier to families using iPhone from giving their children Android phones. While workarounds have emerged over the years for using iMessage on Android, none of them have generally been suitable or reliable.
According to the file Epic quoted Eddy Cue, Apple decided not to develop iMessage for Android as early as 2013, following the launch of its messaging service with iOS 5 in 2011. Cue acknowledges that Apple “may have made a version that works with iOS on Android, so that users of both platforms can exchange messages with each other seamlessly.” However, such a version was never developed.
Epic mentions a number of other Apple services along with iMessage that it claims contributes to keeping users on the iOS platform. These include FaceTime, a video chat service that Steve Jobs announced to be an open industry standard at WWDC 2010. FaceTime was later released on iPhones, iPads and Macs, but is not officially available for non-Apple devices.