Originally Posted by jsmythe00
True True and true. But tell me...have you ever paid your credit card bill over the phone and was charged a processing fee of 4.95? What about paying your mortgage bill online for a fee...vs sending a check out by mail? Convenience! It's more convenient to do everything in one place than having to go to multiple places to get the job done.
But in the end, you are still right. What do you think is the reason for banning the app?
Given Apples ambiguous reason for why, we can't really know. What we do know:
1) Denying the app does not block any of the features of the GV service.
2) Other devices are allowed to have GV native apps on the AT&T network.
3) Other apps on the iPhone duplicate features provided by GV, individually, if not as a whole. This includes, SMS, calling cards, alternate long distance.
4) Third party GV apps were approved and for sale months ago and pulled very recently
5) The only way they could really block access to GV would be to block every single GV phone number and URL.
6) Google stated that the reason given by Apple for denying the app was that it duplicated existing functionality, even though lots of apps do so, including the features that GV offers.
With these givens, I can speculate on the real reason. I believe it is because of Push Notifications in iPhone 3.0 and what it means for VVM (and SMS to a lesser degree). As we have said, the all functionality of a native app is already available and cannot be clocked simply by blocking the app. Google can and will likely just release a web app for the iPhone that has all of the same functionality. But VVM is different. Having access to a third party voice mail system is no big deal on the iPhone. Basically, it would be no different than calling into your home a checking messages remotely. But, with GV, the messages would be left at the GV phone number that you give out and that rings your iPhone. Additionally, without a native app, then you would not receive a notification of new messages, expect perhaps through an email. Without instant notification, the usefulness of an addon voice mail service is questionable at best. But iphone OS 3.0 brought Push. Now, when you get a new message, you would get an instant notification. You could open your GV app and browse your voice mail, just like VVM and listen to messages as you wish, just like VVM...except that you can also read a transcription of your voice mail. Now you have a legitimate reason to dump your VVM service. This isn't an option right now with AT&T, but with other carriers it is. Apple makes a lot of money from VVM, both through VVM server sales to the carriers and a recurring sub fee from the carrier for every subscriber. This is real money Apple would lose and they would lose it internationally.
To me, this is the only reason that makes sense. Blocking customers access to cheap or free long distance, is not only virtually impossible for AT&T but would guarantee they would be investigated. It also makes no sense, as they aren't blocking other ways to do it, both from google and other companies or even users direct dialing calling cards. AT&T just doesn't benefit from simply denying the App in any real way. BlackBerry doesn't have a native VVM service yet, so RIM has no reason to block GV and so it is allowed. This would also explain why the third party apps were allowed months ago. Before Push notifications, no one cared about the VVM feature from GV. If users had to keep opening the app to check for new messages every 10 minutes they might use it, but no way they would drop their trusty iPhone VVM service.
Anyway, with the givens that we do know, no other reason makes sense to me. It could have been AT&T's decision or at least pressure, as little sense as that makes in this case. It could have been Apple independently deciding against the app for the own interests. In either case, it was a dick move and it shouldn't matter that Apple is involved for people to see this. But because it is Apple, many can't see the problem and if we question it, we are trolling misfits who hate Apple.