Google Routes Around App Store On The iPhone... Others Can Too

from the app-store-or-the-web dept

I was just recently suggesting that the massive focus on "apps" and "app stores" may be a red herring, as eventually many of those apps can be built via the web (especially as HTML 5 moves forward), without having to go through any kind of app store approval process. So it's worth noting that, in fact, Google has done exactly that with its Google Voice app for the iPhone (doing so because of problems getting a client-side app approved by Apple). While the app is still rough around the edges, it should be a reminder that there are ways around the app store, and web-based apps have plenty of potential.


Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  •  
    icon
    william (profile), Jan 27th, 2010 @ 1:10am

    I like where this is going, but why wouldn't Apple modify iPhone version of Safari to block out this if they wish to maintain monopoly?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    •  
      icon
      Josh (profile), Jan 27th, 2010 @ 5:42am

      Re:

      I don't think Apple will have any sort of problem with this at all. In fact I bet Steve Jobs is doing a little dance from hearing about this, going "I told you so"

      When the iPhone was first released Apple insisted that people would create web based applications for the phone, which is exactly what Google has done. It was only after a year of people complaining that Apple made the concession to allow 3rd party apps on the device at all. Then they go and complain about the approval processes while forgetting that if they really want their application made they could just make a web based version.

      "But then how would I get someone to pay 99 cents for my iFart application if it's just a website"

       

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    •  
      identicon
      Anonymous Coward, Jan 27th, 2010 @ 1:42pm

      Re: I like where this is going

      Apple is subject to US anti-trust laws.

       

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 27th, 2010 @ 2:51am

    Was this story about Google Voice? Why Yes, it is!

    Hey, nice reporting on a 6 month old story. At one point in time, Mike Masnick was synonymous with "breaking story"

    You're loosing your edge.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    •  
      icon
      Dementia (profile), Jan 27th, 2010 @ 3:18am

      Re: Was this story about Google Voice? Why Yes, it is!

      Hmm, seems the date of the post he linked to is 1/26/2010 and the post states that Google made an announcement "today" which would be the same date as the article. The point wasn't that Google has Google Voice, but that they created a web based app to bypass Apple's app approval process. This would certainly to fit with the general timeliness of other Tech Dirt articles as it just occurred yesterday. Perhaps you should ensure comprehension of the entire article before criticizing his timeliness?

       

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      •  
        identicon
        Anonymous Coward, Jan 27th, 2010 @ 3:28am

        Re: Re: Was this story about Google Voice? Why Yes, it is!

        I read about this sometime last week from another source and somehow it's my problem that Mike's now getting around to it?

        Thanks, Dementia. Good name, by the way. I don't come here to comment to Mike, yet this is chalked up to some sort of "Reading Comprehension Problem".

        I just state the facts. Mike is behind the times. He should get a roll of stamps and just mail the stories in.

         

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        •  
          identicon
          DS, Jan 27th, 2010 @ 3:44am

          Re: Re: Re: Was this story about Google Voice? Why Yes, it is!

          No, but it's your problem that you have to be 'that guy' and bitch about pointlessy stupid thing.

          I don't recall seeing ***BREAKING NEWS*** ***BREAKING NEWS*** at the top of the post.

           

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        •  
          icon
          zaven (profile), Jan 27th, 2010 @ 4:08am

          Re: Re: Re: Was this story about Google Voice? Why Yes, it is!

          Quiet AC, Google just released the Google Voice web app yesterday.

           

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        •  
          icon
          Dalane K. Braunschweig (profile), Jan 27th, 2010 @ 4:13am

          Re: Re: Re: Was this story about Google Voice? Why Yes, it is!

          LOL, I swear the same troll picks different things to lie about every article. There was no IP to try and hammer Mike about so he jumps on timeliness. No really Google has just released today a new and improved web app for Google Voice, they did however announce today's release yesterday. AC you are a genius, you even have me trying to correct you. LOL

           

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        •  
          icon
          Dementia (profile), Jan 27th, 2010 @ 4:14am

          Re: Re: Re: Was this story about Google Voice? Why Yes, it is!

          Glad you like my name, it's certainly better than Anonymous Coward, isn't it?

           

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

          •  
            identicon
            Jess, Jan 27th, 2010 @ 9:20am

            Re: Re: Re: Re: Was this story about Google Voice? Why Yes, it is!

            Holy Crap! I was just reading this comment and one of my coworkers was in another conversation and just said "Dementia's fun, isn't it??"

            Sorry...Had to share that creepy moment :P

             

            reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    •  
      identicon
      Anonymous Coward, Jan 27th, 2010 @ 4:22am

      Re: Was this story about Google Voice? Why Yes, it is!

      Cant always be on top of every story, every time

       

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    •  
      icon
      Not That Chris (profile), Jan 27th, 2010 @ 5:19am

      Re: Was this story about Google Voice? Why Yes, it is!

      Mike might want to be careful with that edge. If it gets too loose, he might accidentally lose it!

       

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    •  
      identicon
      Rebel Rider, Jan 27th, 2010 @ 7:07am

      Re: Was this story about Google Voice? Why Yes, it is!

      AC, it's "losing" not "loosing" and while ur at it why didn't you mention ur with the RIAA/MPAA?

      go 'way

       

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    •  
      icon
      The Groove Tiger (profile), Jan 27th, 2010 @ 7:55am

      Re: Was this story about Google Voice? Why Yes, it is!

      C'mon, let's not all loose our heads over this.

       

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      •  
        identicon
        Anonymous Coward, Jan 27th, 2010 @ 8:31am

        Re: Re: Was this story about Google Voice? Why Yes, it is!

        Good thing my head is in nice and tight, would not want to 'loose' it or lose it.

         

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    •  
      identicon
      Anonymous Coward, Jan 27th, 2010 @ 8:32am

      Re: Was this story about Google Voice? Why Yes, it is!

      LOSING!

       

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 27th, 2010 @ 2:57am

    Nice article

    I like you and that was a great article. You have the boldness of a younger blogger.

    Good luck with that alopecia problem of yours.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    icon
    Yeebok (profile), Jan 27th, 2010 @ 3:36am

    Lie much, AC ?

    You say it's a 6 month old story, but even you, some faceless nobody who won't even enter their name .. saw it last week on an unnamed site, as proof that it's 6 months old. Dementia is right.. you'd need it to believe that. The linked-to site and story are reputable and dated yesterday, even for me way over here at GMT+11.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    icon
    zaven (profile), Jan 27th, 2010 @ 4:11am

    Problems with non-native apps

    The only thing that doesn't work because this is not a native app is a lack of push notifications (i.e. no indication that you've received a new text or voicemail). Then again there's always workarounds like forwarding these things to Gmail, which supports push notifications for email.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    •  
      icon
      Nastybutler77 (profile), Jan 27th, 2010 @ 10:10am

      Re: Problems with non-native apps

      Another problem I have with web apps is if I'm traveling I'll have to either do without my apps, or pay the airlines and airports for WiFi access. That's if they even have WiFi on the flight, which most don't. Or if I'm out of a 3G coverage area (and as Verizon loves to show, is anywhere outside a major city) then a lot of these web apps will either be unusable, or take forever to load. That's not ideal.

       

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    icon
    zenith (profile), Jan 27th, 2010 @ 4:51am

    I wasn't aware this was a "news" site, but a comment site.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    identicon
    ScaredOfTheMan, Jan 27th, 2010 @ 4:55am

    He must be paid

    I am convinced these "pro-IP" trolls are paid or something, they just showed up about 4 months ago, and they are here for every story. Always have something bad to say, trying to cut at Mike, maybe they are afraid

    Now for this story, yse google voice for iphone was accessible via safari 6 months ago, however the new interface which was released (1 or 2 days ago) is the big story because it really feels like a native app.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    identicon
    martyburns, Jan 27th, 2010 @ 4:56am

    Is it just me

    or have there been more than the usual amount of snotty far-from-the-point comments of late?

    Have these people already failed at their New Years resolutions and feel the need to take it out on Techdirt?

    I never understand why these people even visit the site. I reckon that if you dont like it then don't bloody read/visit it.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    icon
    bwp (profile), Jan 27th, 2010 @ 5:06am

    I thought Mike would mention this instead of the Google Voice story

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    •  
      icon
      Dark Helmet (profile), Jan 27th, 2010 @ 6:54am

      Re: I thought Mike would mention this instead of the Google Voice story

      If you had a nifty insiders badge like me, you'd know that the countdown to that story has already begun or might even be expired by now...

       

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      •  
        icon
        senshikaze (profile), Jan 27th, 2010 @ 7:56am

        Re: Re: I thought Mike would mention this instead of the Google Voice story

        that is probably the coolest feature of the insider badge.

        also it is hilarious seeing my comments dated an hour before the post was "submitted." But im shallow and find amusement in that sort of thing.

         

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      •  
        icon
        bwp (profile), Jan 27th, 2010 @ 9:09am

        Re: Re: I thought Mike would mention this instead of the Google Voice story

        I could never be like you DH. That's like comparing me to Michael Jordon in basketball.

         

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        •  
          icon
          Dark Helmet (profile), Jan 27th, 2010 @ 9:56am

          Re: Re: Re: I thought Mike would mention this instead of the Google Voice story

          As a Chicagoan, that's one of the finest compliments I've ever received...

           

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 27th, 2010 @ 5:53am

    blackra1n is a pretty decent web based app for iphone

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    identicon
    MCR, Jan 27th, 2010 @ 6:33am

    Why does Apple Care?

    I really don't think Apple cares about people using the Google Voice app, especially if it's web-based. Apple makes exactly $0 off of AT&T phone plans. Their money is derived from product sales and a % of the data plan that iPhone users are forced to buy.

    Even AT&T shouldn't be that upset, since people who purchase an iPhone are required to get a voice plan for 2 years. Also, as the exclusive iPhone carrier, AT&T can force someone to purchase a voice plan without any reprecussions.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    icon
    senshikaze (profile), Jan 27th, 2010 @ 6:53am

    you know what i find funny? before version 2.0 of the iphone OS, apple required developers to make webapps for the iphone. There was no "app store" or SDK then. All google is doing is doing what would have been if apple never released the SDK.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    identicon
    Hoeppner, Jan 27th, 2010 @ 7:35am

    Really HTML 5, Really? HTML 5 is not coming out anytime soon and will have as many delays as Microsoft can cause. It is not in Microsoft's business plan to have to compete with web apps that don't care what operating system people use.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    •  
      identicon
      Anonymous Coward, Jan 27th, 2010 @ 7:55am

      Re:

      That's the beauty of the standard. It doesn't rely on a single company, although MS can input into it.

      HTML 5 will be coming sooner than you think.

       

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 27th, 2010 @ 9:29am

    opposite of lo(o)ser

    ~looser = tighter (uptighter ? not really a compliment either)
    -loser = gainer (does this make me look fat?)

    loosen == what I do with my belt after a big meal so I can get comfortable

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    identicon
    Blah, Feb 15th, 2010 @ 7:01pm

    Why not just use the google voice app?

    If your iphone is jailbroken or "Full featured" as I like to call it, then the google voice app is already available and fully functional right from Cydia or a number of other sources, pre-cracked version are even available that work over EDGE/3G without wifi or the need for the 3G unrestrictor app.

    If your iphone is not jailbroken, then you are probably not tech savvy enough to be on the google voice bandwagon anyways.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]


Add Your Comment

Have a Techdirt Account? Sign in now. Want one? Register here
Get Techdirt’s Daily Email
Save me a cookie
  • Note: A CRLF will be replaced by a break tag (<br>), all other allowable HTML will remain intact
  • Allowed HTML Tags: <b> <i> <a> <em> <br> <strong> <blockquote> <hr> <tt>
Follow Techdirt
A word from our sponsors...
Essential Reading
Techdirt Reading List
Techdirt Insider Chat
A word from our sponsors...
Recent Stories
A word from our sponsors...

Close

Email This