1. waterfrontmgmt's Avatar
    with all the interest in google voice, i thought some of you might find this article interesting. the fcc is going after apple/at&t over their rejection of google voice apps. i believe this could have a big impact on how all the carriers eventually handle google voice. some of you have been able to set up google voice with your friends and family/fave 5 to get extra unlimited calls.

    this adds an alomost unbelieveable value to your cell plan. for consumers...thats a good thing.

    this article includes the letters that the fcc sent apple and at&t, as well as, google.

    FCC Takes On Apple and AT&T over Google Voice Rejection -- Seeking Alpha

    By Jason Kincaid
    My, how the tables have turned. Earlier this week, we learned that Apple had suddenly begun to pull third party iPhone applications for Google Voice, citing the unconvincing rationale that they duplicated some of the iPhones functionality. We then broke the news that Apple had also rejected Googles own official Google Voice application submitted six weeks prior, sparking a din of complaints from developers and users alike over the arbitrary and possibly anti-competitive restrictions being imposed by Apple. AT&T, too, has been a target of frequent criticism as many of us believe it may have also played a part in the decision. Of course, nobody really knows who is to blame AT&T has hinted that it was ultimately Apples decision, and Apple continues to remain mute on the issue. But now we may get our answers: the Dow Jones newswire reports that The Federal Communications Commission is looking into Apples rejection of Google Voice, and has sent letters to AT&T, Apple, and Google to find out whats going on. Weve obtained copies of the letters and reprinted them below.

    The newswire report notes that this is part of the FCCs ongoing investigation into wireless handsets and their exclusive deals with carriers. Of course, this all comes years after Google CEO Eric Schmidt sent a letter to the FCC, urging it to adopt open standards that would gives users the freedom to use whichever applications theyd like on their wireless devices, on whichever network they preferred. At the time the suggestions seemed perhaps a bit idealistic, but now its becoming clear just how badly theyre needed.

    It has been just over one year since Apple released the App Store, and already were beginning to see just what can happen when major companies collude to restrict user choice without fear of recourse. As Ive written before, Google Voice offers a service that innovates in the telephony space in a way that hasnt been seen for years. But rather than try to improve and offer a better service, Apple and AT&T are doing what they can do to protect their sacred cash cow. But it looks like the government isnt going to stand for that any longer. With this move, the FCC is showing that its not going to let Apple carry its famed culture of secrecy into the telecom space.

    FCC Letter to Apple

    July 31, 2009

    Catherine A. Novelli, Vice President
    Worldwide Government Affairs
    Apple Inc.
    901 15th Street, NW, Suite 1000
    Washington, DC 20005

    RE: Google Voice and related iPhone applications

    Dear Ms. Novelli:

    Recent press reports indicate that Apple has declined to approve the Google Voice application for the iPhone and has removed related (and previously approved) third-party applications from the iPhone App Store. In light of pending FCC proceedings regarding wireless open access (RM-11361) and handset exclusivity (RM-11497), we are interested in a more complete understanding of this situation.

    To that end, please provide answers to the following questions by close of business on Friday, August 21, 2009.

    1. Why did Apple reject the Google Voice application for iPhone and remove related third-party applications from its App Store? In addition to Google Voice, which related third-party applications were removed or have been rejected? Please provide the specific name of each application and the contact information for the developer.
    2. Did Apple act alone, or in consultation with AT&T, in deciding to reject the Google Voice application and related applications? If the latter, please describe the communications between Apple and AT&T in connection with the decision to reject Google Voice. Are there any contractual conditions or non-contractual understandings with AT&T that affected Apples decision in this matter?
    3. Does AT&T have any role in the approval of iPhone applications generally (or in certain cases)? If so, under what circumstances, and what role does it play? What roles are specified in the contractual provisions between Apple and AT&T (or any non-contractual understandings) regarding the consideration of particular iPhone applications?
    4. Please explain any differences between the Google Voice iPhone application and any Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) applications that Apple has approved for the iPhone. Are any of the approved VoIP applications allowed to operate on AT&Ts 3G network?
    5. What other applications have been rejected for use on the iPhone and for what reasons? Is there a list of prohibited applications or of categories of applications that is provided to potential vendors/developers? If so, is this posted on the iTunes website or otherwise disclosed to consumers?
    6. What are the standards for considering and approving iPhone applications? What is the approval process for such applications (timing, reasons for rejection, appeal process, etc.)? What is the percentage of applications that are rejected? What are the major reasons for rejecting an application?

    Request for Confidential Treatment. If Apple requests that any information or documents responsive to this letter be treated in a confidential manner, it shall submit, along with all responsive information and documents, a statement in accordance with section 0.459 of the Commissions rules. 47 C.F.R. 0.459. Requests for confidential treatment must comply with the requirements of section 0.459, including the standards of specificity mandated by section 0.459(b). Accordingly, blanket requests for confidentiality of a large set of documents are unacceptable. Pursuant to section 0.459(c), the Bureau will not consider requests that do not comply with the requirements of section 0.459.

    Thank you in advance for your anticipated cooperation.

    Sincerely,

    James D. Schlichting
    Acting Chief
    Wireless Telecommunications Bureau
    Federal Communications Commission

    FCC Letter to Google

    July 31, 2009

    Richard S. Whitt, Esq.
    Washington Telecom and Media Counsel
    Google Inc.
    1101 New York Avenue, NW, Second Floor
    Washington, DC 20005

    RE: Apples Rejection of the Google Voice for iPhone Application

    Dear Mr. Whitt:

    Recent press reports indicate that Apple has declined to approve the Google Voice application for the iPhone and has removed related (and previously approved) third-party applications from the iPhone App Store. In light of pending FCC proceedings regarding wireless open access (RM-11361) and handset exclusivity (RM-11497), we are interested in a more complete understanding of this situation.

    To that end, please provide answers to the following questions by close of business on Friday, August 21, 2009.

    1. Please provide a description of the proposed Google Voice application for iPhone. What are the key features, and how does it operate (over a voice or data network, etc.)?
    2. What explanation was given (if any) for Apples rejection of the Google Voice application (and for any other Google applications for iPhone that have been rejected, such as Google Latitude)? Please describe any communications between Google and AT&T or Apple on this topic and a summary of any meetings or discussion.
    3. Has Apple approved any Google applications for the Apple App Store? If so, what services do they provide, and, in Googles opinion, are they similar to any Apple/AT&T-provided applications?
    4.Does Google have any other proposed applications pending with Apple, and if so, what services do they provide?
    5. Are there other mechanisms by which an iPhone user will be able to access either some or all of the features of Google Voice? If so, please explain how and to what extent iPhone users can utilize Google Voice despite the fact that it is not available through Apples App Store.
    6. Please provide a description of the standards for considering and approving applications with respect to Googles Android platform. What is the approval process for such applications (timing, reasons for rejection, appeal process, etc.)? What is the percentage of applications that are rejected? What are the major reasons for rejecting an application?

    Request for Confidential Treatment. If Google requests that any information or documents responsive to this letter be treated in a confidential manner, it shall submit, along with all responsive information and documents, a statement in accordance with section 0.459 of the Commissions rules. 47 C.F.R. 0.459. Requests for confidential treatment must comply with the requirements of section 0.459, including the standards of specificity mandated by section 0.459(b). Accordingly, blanket requests for confidentiality of a large set of documents are unacceptable. Pursuant to section 0.459(c), the Bureau will not consider requests that do not comply with the requirements of section 0.459.

    Thank you in advance for your anticipated cooperation.

    Sincerely,

    James D. Schlichting
    Acting Chief
    Wireless Telecommunications Bureau
    Federal Communications Commission

    FCC Letter to AT&T

    July 31, 2009

    James W. Cicconi
    Senior Executive Vice President-External and Legislative Affairs
    AT&T Services, Inc.
    1120 20th Street, NW, Suite 1000
    Washington, DC 20036

    RE: Apples Rejection of the Google Voice for iPhone Application

    Dear Mr. Cicconi:

    Recent press reports indicate that Apple has declined to approve the Google Voice application for the iPhone and has removed related (and previously approved) third-party applications from the iPhone App Store. In light of pending FCC proceedings regarding wireless open access (RM-11361) and handset exclusivity (RM-11497), we are interested in a more complete understanding of this situation.

    To that end, please provide answers to the following questions by close of business on Friday, August 21, 2009.

    1. What role, if any, did AT&T play in Apples consideration of the Google Voice and related applications? What role, if any, does AT&T play in consideration of iPhone applications generally? What roles are specified in the contractual provisions between Apple and AT&T (or in any non-contractual understanding between the companies) regarding the consideration of particular iPhone applications?
    2. Did Apple consult with AT&T in the process of deciding to reject the Google Voice application? If so, please describe any communications between AT&T and Apple or Google on this topic, including the parties involved and a summary of any meetings or discussions.
    3. Please explain AT&Ts understanding of any differences between the Google Voice iPhone application and any Voice over Internet Protocol applications that are currently used on the AT&T network, either via the iPhone or via handsets other than the iPhone.
    4. To AT&Ts knowledge, what other applications have been rejected for use on the iPhone? Which of these applications were designed to operate on AT&Ts 3G network? What was AT&Ts role in considering whether such applications would be approved or rejected?
    5. Please detail any conditions included in AT&Ts agreements or contracts with Apple for the iPhone related to the certification of applications or any particular applications ability to use AT&Ts 3G network.
    6. Are there any terms in AT&Ts customer agreements that limit customer usage of certain third-party applications? If so, please indicate how consumers are informed of such limitations and whether such limitations are posted on the iTunes website as well. In general, what is AT&Ts role in certifying applications on devices that run over AT&Ts 3G network? What, if any, applications require AT&Ts approval to be added to a device? Are there any differences between AT&Ts treatment of the iPhone and other devices used on its 3G network?
    7. Please list the services/applications that AT&T provides for the iPhone, and whether there any similar, competing iPhone applications offered by other providers in Apples App Store.
    8. Do any devices that operate on AT&Ts network allow use of the Google Voice application? Do any devices that operate on AT&Ts network allow use of other applications that have been rejected for the iPhone?
    9. Please explain whether, on AT&Ts network, consumers access to and usage of Google Voice is disabled on the iPhone but permitted on other handsets, including Research in Motions BlackBerry devices.

    Request for Confidential Treatment. If AT&T requests that any information or documents responsive to this letter be treated in a confidential manner, it shall submit, along with all responsive information and documents, a statement in accordance with section 0.459 of the Commissions rules. 47 C.F.R. 0.459. Requests for confidential treatment must comply with the requirements of section 0.459, including the standards of specificity mandated by section 0.459(b). Accordingly, blanket requests for confidentiality of a large set of documents are unacceptable. Pursuant to section 0.459(c), the Bureau will not consider requests that do not comply with the requirements of section 0.459.

    Thank you in advance for your anticipated cooperation.

    Sincerely,

    James D. Schlichting
    Acting Chief
    Wireless Telecommunications BureauFederal Communications Commission

    Original post
    08-01-09 07:33 PM
  2. waterfrontmgmt's Avatar
    at&t is the first to respond to the fcc letter...basically, they threw apple under the bus saying it is 100% apples decision to accept or not accept iphone apps.
    08-02-09 06:33 AM
  3. bboy2143's Avatar
    at&t is the first to respond to the fcc letter...basically, they threw apple under the bus saying it is 100% apples decision to accept or not accept iphone apps.
    I think its BS. AT&T could hardly handle the iPhone.. And then here comes GV. It would screw up AT&T even more. I think they had something to do with it. =\

    Posted from my CrackBerry at wapforums.crackberry.com
    08-02-09 12:20 PM
  4. waterfrontmgmt's Avatar
    who stands more to lose if someone can call for free....apple or at&t?

    i would think both...but certainly at&t has as much to lose if not more.
    08-02-09 01:55 PM
  5. MobileMadness002's Avatar
    If the GV was permitted I would guarantee the removal of unlimited data plans. AT&T is not gonna allow customers to call for free. Mind they would still have the voice plans so it is really a question of what minimum plan would be required for the GV to operate. Could it be forced through a specific APN to account for data traffic and would AT&T allow international calls to be placed using this technology. Grant there really is no "international" on the internet. I am very interested in the outcome of this. Maybe a 5.00 per month feature addon for the data devices to allow VoIP.
    08-02-09 02:11 PM
  6. nevilleadaniels's Avatar
    First it is Google Voice to be taken off.
    Next it will be Skype.
    Then it will be WhatsApp.
    Friday no particular order by WeChat telegram signal and any other voice communication package that is encrypted with the exceptions of apples own Systems. And they will be simply blocked after the rest of gone.
    This is now NSA prime directive in conjunction with homeland security.
    De-secure the population and restrict security to a limited few.
    portplayer likes this.
    08-16-18 11:54 AM
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