Uncommon Wisdom

Sep 21 2009   1:44PM GMT

Google Voice, Apple, AT&T and the FCC: The flap continues

Tom Nolle Tom Nolle Profile: Tom Nolle

Google has released some information that suggests that Apple’s statements to the FCC in July about blocking Google Voice were not correct, and the rumor is that even more damning information is available at Google for release should Apple not reconsider its position.

Apple claimed that its “rejection” of the Google Voice application was for look-and-feel reasons, but the Google release suggests it was explicitly because Google Voice competed with basic Apple/AT&T functionality, something the FCC would likely rule on.

This issue could bite both Apple and AT&T because an actual false statement to the FCC would be bad politics, at the minimum. We say this because it’s not clear whether the FCC really has authority over Apple and handsets. The FCC would have to contend that Apple was simply a stalking horse for AT&T interests in this case, and AT&T is within the FCC’s jurisdictional web.

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