Beeper Mini for Android lives again, but for how long is anybody's guess

Posted:
in iOS edited December 2023

Beeper Mini is back and working, with the developers releasing an update for the Android app that lets it use Apple's iMessage network once again.




Following the launch of the Android app and the blocking of it by Apple, Beeper insisted that a fix was on the way that would get Beeper Mini working again. On Monday, it released the update.

Offered as a sideload-able app while it awaits to be approved for download from the Google Play Store, the Beeper Mini app update is said by the company to fix an issue "that caused messages not to be sent or received."

As part of the same update, Beeper Mini also has some feature improvements, such as chats opening at the last unread message and changes to the video player.

With the latest iteration, phone number registration isn't working, which now requires users to sign in with their Apple ID. Messages will, for the moment, be sent and received using the user's email address instead of their phone number, Beeper's blog post states.

The app is also being made free to use for the moment, due to events being "a bit chaotic" and that Beeper is "not comfortable subjecting paying users to this." Once things stabilize, Beeper intends to turn back on subscriptions.

At the same time, the security and privacy of Beeper Mini is "unchanged" according to the developers, using local end-to-end encryption.

While the update makes Beeper Mini functional once again, it remains to be seen how long it will stay active before Apple makes another change that disables access once again.

Objecting to risk'



As part of the blog post, the company takes a moment to respond to Apple's statement where it took "steps to protect users by "blocking techniques that exploit fake credentials in order to gain access to iMessage." Apple referred to the techniques as posing "significant risks to user security and privacy," justifying its blocking of the app.

Referring to Apple's statement as "1984-esque doublespeak" and "complete FUD," Beeper Mini is declared to have "made communication between Android and iPhone users more secure. That is a fact."

Apple's move was "designed to protect the lock-in effect of iMessage," which leaves iPhone customers with "less security and privacy than before."

Beeper's reasoning is that, when Android users joined an existing iMessage secure encrypted chat, the app would default to switching the entire group chat to using unencrypted SMS. "This immediately made communication between iPhone customers in the group chat less secure," Beeper writes.

Beeper Mini "fixed this problem" to enable Android and iPhone users to "enjoy a secure, easy, and high quality chat experience."

The developers "deeply object to the allegation" that Beeper Mini poses significant risks. "This is completely untrue. As we explained above, the opposite is actually true," the blog reads.

A blog post has since been published explaining how the app keeps data secure and private, while the connection method is now open source and available for anyone to review.

"At the end of the day, we are committed to building the best chat app on earth, the blog post concludes. "We will continue working on that."

Read on AppleInsider

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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 22
    How long do you give this cat & mouse game until it’s over?
    byronlJaiOh81watto_cobra
  • Reply 2 of 22
    One would hope Apple will disable any AppleID using this “service”. 
    Dead_PoolJaiOh81watto_cobra
  • Reply 3 of 22
    gatorguygatorguy Posts: 24,095member
    And Beeper says "not using Mac server farms." to do so.  
    byronlJaiOh81
  • Reply 4 of 22
    chasmchasm Posts: 3,229member
    Hey, turns out hijacking other companies’ proprietary technology is not really the strongest business model. Who knew?
    Anilu_777Dead_PoolJaiOh81watto_cobra
  • Reply 5 of 22
    Beeper is lying and being selective in what they say.

    They're referencing SMS chats when they say they have better security. That’s not a very big hurdle.
    chasmAnilu_777Dead_PoolJaiOh81watto_cobra
  • Reply 6 of 22
    How long do you give this cat & mouse game until it’s over?
    Probably until iMessage becomes less popular.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 7 of 22
    chasm said:
    Hey, turns out hijacking other companies’ proprietary technology is not really the strongest business model. Who knew?
    It worked out well for Samuel Slater.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 8 of 22
    How long do you give this cat & mouse game until it’s over?
    Probably until iMessage becomes less popular.
    It has nothing to do with iMesaage being "popular." The problem is that iMessage is the default messaging app on iPhones, and iPhone users in the U.S. refuse to use anything else.  So an app like Beeper Mini is the only way for Android and iPhone users to have a halfway decent messaging.experience, especially with group chats.
    edited December 2023
  • Reply 9 of 22
    chasm said:
    Hey, turns out hijacking other companies’ proprietary technology is not really the strongest business model. Who knew?
    And yet they seem to be doing just fine.  Who knew?
  • Reply 10 of 22
    Beeper is lying and being selective in what they say.

    They're referencing SMS chats when they say they have better security. That’s not a very big hurdle.
    No, they're not lying.  When iPhones communicate with Android phones they default to SMS.

    edited December 2023 muthuk_vanalingamgatorguy
  • Reply 11 of 22
    aderutter said:
    One would hope Apple will disable any AppleID using this “service”. 
    Many would agree, but many would also point out that Beeper has designed this service in such a way that Apple has no idea the client doesn't own Apple hardware. More details in this video.
  • Reply 12 of 22
    There is no problem. If on Android, SMS is fine. If you want to use Apple’s proprietary technology, get a device that runs their software. 

    I may prefer to communicate by CB radio. That doesn’t mean I can force everyone to buy CB’s, or modify their communication devices to receive CB transmissions. 

    pderos said:
    How long do you give this cat & mouse game until it’s over?
    Probably until iMessage becomes less popular.
    It has nothing to do with iMesaage being "popular." The problem is that iMessage is the default messaging app on iPhones, and iPhone users in the U.S. refuse to use anything else.  So an app like Beeper Mini is the only way for Android and iPhone users to have a halfway decent messaging.experience, especially with group chats.

    JaiOh81watto_cobra
  • Reply 13 of 22
    They’ll need to get real jobs pretty soon here

    pderos said:
    chasm said:
    Hey, turns out hijacking other companies’ proprietary technology is not really the strongest business model. Who knew?
    And yet they seem to be doing just fine.  Who knew?

    watto_cobra
  • Reply 14 of 22
    This is irrelevant. Apple has the right to control their own product, until and unless Big Brother, in its infinite wisdom, steps in and says otherwise. (Thankfully, this is a country that respects private property rights, at least so far.) If you don’t like Apple’s product, vote with your pocketbook and use something else. 

    pderos said:
    Beeper is lying and being selective in what they say.

    They're referencing SMS chats when they say they have better security. That’s not a very big hurdle.
    No, they're not lying.  When iPhones communicate with Android phones they default to SMS.


    JaiOh81watto_cobra
  • Reply 15 of 22
    I may feel I should be able to put dead animals in US mailboxes and have them delivered. That may be my preferred form of communication. That doesn’t mean I can force the post office to accommodate me. 

    aderutter said:
    One would hope Apple will disable any AppleID using this “service”. 
    Many would agree, but many would also point out that Beeper has designed this service in such a way that Apple has no idea the client doesn't own Apple hardware. More details in this video.

    watto_cobra
  • Reply 16 of 22
    Dead_Pool said:
    There is no problem. If on Android, SMS is fine. If you want to use Apple’s proprietary technology, get a device that runs their software. 

    I may prefer to communicate by CB radio. That doesn’t mean I can force everyone to buy CB’s, or modify their communication devices to receive CB transmissions. 

    pderos said:
    How long do you give this cat & mouse game until it’s over?
    Probably until iMessage becomes less popular.
    It has nothing to do with iMesaage being "popular." The problem is that iMessage is the default messaging app on iPhones, and iPhone users in the U.S. refuse to use anything else.  So an app like Beeper Mini is the only way for Android and iPhone users to have a halfway decent messaging.experience, especially with group chats.

    It's not just about Android users.  iPhone users don't like the mixed Android and iPhone chat experience either.  They are constantly bitching about it.  Beeper offers a solution.
    edited December 2023
  • Reply 17 of 22
    Dead_Pool said:
    This is irrelevant. Apple has the right to control their own product, until and unless Big Brother, in its infinite wisdom, steps in and says otherwise. (Thankfully, this is a country that respects private property rights, at least so far.) If you don’t like Apple’s product, vote with your pocketbook and use something else. 

    pderos said:
    Beeper is lying and being selective in what they say.

    They're referencing SMS chats when they say they have better security. That’s not a very big hurdle.
    No, they're not lying.  When iPhones communicate with Android phones they default to SMS.


    Irrelevant. The original comment said Beeper was lying.  Your comment is non-responsive.
    edited December 2023
  • Reply 18 of 22
    Dead_Pool said:
    They’ll need to get real jobs pretty soon here

    pderos said:
    chasm said:
    Hey, turns out hijacking other companies’ proprietary technology is not really the strongest business model. Who knew?
    And yet they seem to be doing just fine.  Who knew?

    Guess we'll see!
  • Reply 19 of 22
    pderos said:
    How long do you give this cat & mouse game until it’s over?
    Probably until iMessage becomes less popular.
    It has nothing to do with iMesaage being "popular." The problem is that iMessage is the default messaging app on iPhones, and iPhone users in the U.S. refuse to use anything else.  So an app like Beeper Mini is the only way for Android and iPhone users to have a halfway decent messaging.experience, especially with group chats.
    WhatsApp, telegram, signal, sessions, etc. There are plenty of third party apps that have been used for many years to send high quality pics and videos between the two platforms 
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 20 of 22
    JaiOh81 said:
    pderos said:
    How long do you give this cat & mouse game until it’s over?
    Probably until iMessage becomes less popular.
    It has nothing to do with iMesaage being "popular." The problem is that iMessage is the default messaging app on iPhones, and iPhone users in the U.S. refuse to use anything else.  So an app like Beeper Mini is the only way for Android and iPhone users to have a halfway decent messaging.experience, especially with group chats.
    WhatsApp, telegram, signal, sessions, etc. There are plenty of third party apps that have been used for many years to send high quality pics and videos between the two platforms 
    You didn't read my comment apparently:  U.S. iPhone users won't install another app. For the life of me. I don't understand why so many Apple devotees are so upset about Beeper.
    edited December 2023
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