FCC to crack the case of the rejected Google Voice app

by Justin Horn on Jul 31st, 2009 @ 9:21 pm

I’m sure you’ve heard by now the FCC is looking into the whole Google Voice app rejection fiasco that we talked about the other day then followed up a day later with AT&T’s denial of involvement.

TechCrunch has obtained and posted the 3 letters sent out from the FCC to Apple, AT&T, and Google. In the letter to Apple they ask several questions we are all dieing to know with a deadline for those answer by close of business on Friday, August 21, 2009. So it looks like we should only have to wait another month for the truth.

Here are the questions they are asking Apple:

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 Apple’s 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&T’s 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?

To see all three letter in their entirety visit the TechCrunch link.

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View 2 Comments
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  1. [...] and Google are supposed to be submitting their official response to the FCC today over the whole Google Voice rejections. My guess is by end of day today we still won’t have a good (or any) reason for the [...]

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  3. [...] FCC began an investigation into the Google Voice iPhone app rejection what seems like forever ago now. Part of Google’s [...]

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