One of my friends was using Beeper’s iMessage-for-Android app, Beeper Mini, to follow group chats since she was the only Android user. It worked great until last Friday, when it didn’t work at all.
What surprised her wasn’t that she was back to being the Android spam in chats again. It wasn’t the resulting low-quality images, lossy encryption, and weird “confirm your message” reaction texts. He was losing messages during the outage and wasn’t entirely sure whether they were sent or received. There was a gathering on Saturday, and she had to double-check with some people on details after accidentally showing up early at the wrong place.
That kind of grievance is to blame, after Apple on Wednesday appeared to block what Beeper described as “about 5% of Beeper Mini users” from accessing iMessages, both of which are co-founders. Eric Migicowski The app informed users They understood if people wanted to get out. The app had already suspended its plans to charge customers $1.99 per month, after the first major outage. But this was more about “how annoying this uncertainty is to our users,” Migicovsky posted.
Fighting on two fronts
But Bieber will continue to work to ensure access and continue the fight on other fronts. Migicowski pointed to Epic’s victory in court against the Google Play Store (“Big Tech companies”) as motivation. “We have a chance. We won’t give up.” Over the weekend, Migicowski retweeted offers of support from senators Elizabeth Warren (D-Massachusetts) and Amy Klobuchar (Democrat from Minnesota), who focused on controlling and regulating the powers of big tech companies.
Apple previously issued a (rather uncommon) statement about Beeper’s access to iMessage, stating that it “has taken steps to protect our users by blocking technologies that exploit fake credentials in order to access iMessage.” Citing privacy, security and spam concerns, Apple stated that it “will continue to make updates in the future” to protect users. Migicovsky previously denied to Ars that Beeper used “fake credentials” or made iMessages less secure in any way.
I asked Migicowski via direct message if there might be a point at which Beeper’s access would be “flattened” or “backed up and running,” in light of Apple’s stated plan to continually ban him, as he said in his post on X (formerly Twitter). He wrote that it was up to the press and society. “If there’s enough pressure on Apple, they’ll have to stop messing with us.” He explained that “we” means Apple customers using iMessage and Android users trying to chat securely with iPhone friends.
“This is who they are punishing,” he wrote. “It’s not a Beeper vs. Apple battle, it’s an Apple vs. Customer battle.”
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