By Andrew Romero & Abner Li
In response to a recent article about iMessage's dominance among an "army of texting tweens" leading to young Android users feeling ostracized when communicating with iOS users, Google exec Hiroshi Lockheimer tweeted this...
"Apple’s iMessage lock-in is a documented strategy. Using peer pressure and bullying as a way to sell products is disingenuous for a company that has humanity and equity as a core part of its marketing. The standards exist today to fix this."
In recent years, he has been very critical of Apple not supporting the RCS standard to make iOS messaging more interoperable with Android. As it stands, both Android and Apple devices have their own "language" for communicating on a level better than the dated SMS. For Android, that's RCS (rich communication services) and for Apple, it's just iMessage.
In his tweet, Hiroshi Lockheimer is likely referencing what came to light in the Apple vs Epic lawsuit. That suit unearthed a few interest statements such as "moving iMessage to Android will hurt us more than help us" and "iMessage on Android would simply serve to remove [an] obstacle to iPhone families giving their kids Android phones." Both of these statements were made by high-level Apple employees.
Lockheimer believes that Apple's decision to not support the RCS standard is meant to protect iMessage's vendor lock-in effect. If Apple were to adopt the standard, Android devices and Apple devices would be able to communicate with features like typing indicators, read receipts, and being able to send content over WiFi/data.
The point this Google exec is making is this... Without the divide between iMessage and Android's adopted RCS standard, there'd be less pressure among young users to buy iPhone's, simply because their peers bully them into doing so. According to Lockheimer, this behavior is welcomed and perpetuated by Apple.
Over the past few years, multiple Google execs have encouraged Apple to adopt the RCS standard, but this recent tweet may be the harshest yet. While it's unlikely Apple will move to support RCS in the very near future, you can follow the story at 9to5Google and keep up to date with the latest Google news.