FCC takes aim at Apple and AT&T re: Google Voice app rejection

Fred von Lohmann, writing for the EFF Deeplinks blog, reports on the FCC’s investigation regarding the highly dubious and potentially anti-competitive rejection of a Google Voice app for the iPhone.

And my not-so-humble opinion, of course, can be summed up thusly: About damn time. Hopefully, a decision on this will be at least useful as some kind of precedent so that Apple’s out-of-control rejections of iPhone apps are at least reined in a bit.

One of the more interesting quotes from the blog entry:

When a dominant hardware platform vendor teams up with a dominant network services provider, and then selectively blocks or hobbles software applications on the platform, consumers should smell an anticompetitive rat. After all, if Microsoft had a veto right over every app that ran under Windows, and used that power to selectively ban competitors who “duplicate” functionality offered by Microsoft’s own apps, we’d expect competition regulators to be up in arms.

Indeed, even Microsoft knows they would never be able to get away with locking down Windows to the extent Apple has locked down the iPhone platform. Of course, it’s much easier and nowhere near as risky (legally and otherwise) to install an alternative operating system on a PC compared to jailbreaking an iPhone.

Hopefully, the FCC will see Apple’s shenanigans for what they are: anticompetitive, unfair, and unacceptable.