Department of Justice and FTC Looking Into Beeper iMessage Controversy

The United States Department of Justice (DOJ) and Federal Trade Commission (FTC) are intensifying their investigations into Apple's alleged anti-competitive practices following the recent blocking of the iMessage for Android app Beeper Mini, the New York Times reports.

Beeper Mini Feature
Following calls from a bipartisan group of senators for a DOJ investigation into the matter, Beeper founder Eric Migicovsky reportedly met with DOJ antitrust lawyers on Tuesday, December 12. The DOJ is currently embroiled in a four-year-long investigation into Apple's alleged anticompetitive conduct.

The New York Times also suggested that the FTC is involved, pointing to a blog post published yesterday by the commission warning that it will evaluate "privacy and security" justifications for refusing to interoperate with other companies' technology:

In the face of concerns about anticompetitive conduct, companies may claim privacy and security reasons as justifications for refusing to have their products and services interoperate with other companies' products and services. As an agency that enforces both competition and consumer protection laws, the Commission is uniquely situated to evaluate claims of privacy and data security that implicate competition.

Beeper launched Beeper Mini earlier this month, aiming to bridge the gap between Android and iMessage. Apple quickly moved to shut down the app, citing security concerns and unauthorized access to its iMessage servers.

Despite multiple attempts by Beeper to circumvent Apple's restrictions, the company has now effectively admitted defeat, touting jailbroken iPhones as the final solution to keep the service up and running amid an acknowledgement of the unsustainable nature of its efforts. While Apple has consistently defended its actions as necessary for maintaining user security and the integrity of its services, increased attention from two major regulatory bodies indicates the seriousness of ongoing antitrust allegations against the company.

Note: Due to the political or social nature of the discussion regarding this topic, the discussion thread is located in our Political News forum. All forum members and site visitors are welcome to read and follow the thread, but posting is limited to forum members with at least 100 posts.

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Top Rated Comments

cocky jeremy Avatar
25 weeks ago

Apple acts like a grade-school bully. In the end, I think Apple’s anticompetitive behavior will end up leading to parts of it being broken up. Remember when Microsoft was split up over browser influence? Companies have been allowed to grow into these giant anticompetitive forces now that destroy all competition, steal IP and even steal from its own developers! Really want Apple to be investigated and things to change.

It would be better for all of us. I love a lot of Apple things, but I hate the ecosystem that acts like a monopoly. And the vertical integration of the entire pipeline looks like a monopoly.

My perfect iPhone would be a Galaxy Ultra operating on an A17 Pro with iOS running.

My perfect computer would be an iPad running MacOS or a Thinkpad running MacOS. I don’t think companies should be forced to sell other companies products but I do think the vast size of Apple is good for nobody except maybe Tim and the top 1% of shareholders.

If Apple was split into six or seven companies, they would all be better. And interoperability would be a feature among all devices. Instead of a walled garden approach. It’s sticky as investors say, but it’s also anticompetitive. Investors will keep investing in these companies with monopolistic practices until someone puts an end to it. Build it all in America and then it at least builds up our economy. But there is just no advantage right now to allowing one company to control so much.
There's nothing anticompetitive about keeping their work on their devices only. Other texting apps exist on iOS. Apple allows that. They aren't allowing others to use THEIR work.
Score: 73 Votes (Like | Disagree)
HiVolt Avatar
25 weeks ago
I really don't get it. these guys are trying to use a private company's services without authorization or payment, and are throwing a fit?
Score: 73 Votes (Like | Disagree)
gleepskip Avatar
25 weeks ago
I have an idea. Lets bring in the corrupt bureaucrats with no understanding of technology to resolve this. Brilliant!
Score: 60 Votes (Like | Disagree)
cmChimera Avatar
25 weeks ago

For those who are on the side of Apple and wants to keep iMessage on their iPhones... need to understand that allowing iMessage on Android benefits you (shocker!).
Sure, we can debate if Apple should release iMessage for Android. But there’s very little to debate about whether another company should be able to use Apple’s servers and technology without authorization.
Score: 49 Votes (Like | Disagree)
I7guy Avatar
25 weeks ago
I hope they are also looking into charging the beeper ceo for unauthorized access. Companies think they can freeload and get to use apples customers and infrastructure.

Hopefully this plays out with beeper being on the wrong side of the law.

Hopefully the American people come to their collective senses and vote these anti-corporate politicians out of office.
Score: 47 Votes (Like | Disagree)
cocky jeremy Avatar
25 weeks ago

For those who are on the side of Apple and wants to keep iMessage on their iPhones... need to understand that allowing iMessage on Android benefits you (shocker!).

You won't have to be concerned about "oh, they have an Android... I don't care to message them." Look at the data from teenagers and especially in the dating world. It removes that barrier. And I know you might be wondering... well, there's plenty of other messaging platforms to exchange messages with for Android users.

But the issue is that most iPhone users IN THE US... gravitate toward iMessage. If we (in the states) can agree to move to a cross-platform messaging app... this whole situation would be mute.
That's Apple's proprietary system. If they wanted it open to others, it would be. They don't, so it won't be. It's that simple.
Score: 38 Votes (Like | Disagree)