Blog Post

Report: Google Voice Could Bypass Apple's Restrictions As A Web App

iPhone owners may ultimately get their chance to use Google (NSDQ: GOOG) Voice — and it may happen before the FCC finishes (or even starts) its investigation into why Apple (NSDQ: AAPL) rejected the app in the first place. That’s because Google is reportedly working on a web-based version of the Google Voice app, meaning iPhone users won’t have to go through the App Store to get it.

The NYT’s David Pogue first reported that Google was “readying a replacement” for the app that would include the same SMS, cheap long-distance calling and voicemail management features. InfoWeek followed up with Google, and though the company didn’t outright confirm the rumor — it didn’t refute it with this emailed statement either:

“Apple did not approve the Google Voice application we submitted six weeks ago to the Apple App Store. We will continue to work to bring our services to iPhone users, for example by taking advantage of advances in mobile browsers.”

The only way that Apple (or AT&T) would be able to prevent people from using the Google Voice app-as-webpage would be for AT&T (NYSE: T) to block the site specifically. And given the almost instant scrutiny that both companies fell under after the app was initially blocked — not to mention AT&T’s reputation for being surveillance-friendly — that’s a highly unlikely outcome.