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Google says Apple uses 'peer pressure and bullying' to convince users iMessage is a symbol of status


Google hits back at Apple for using ‘peer pressure and bullying’ to convince users its iMessage is a symbol of status, report says

  • Google attacked Apple, accusing it of peer pressuring and bullying users into keeping their iPhones to have access to iMessage
  • The feud is over claims that Apple has marketed its blue text bubbles as a symbol of status over Android’s green text bubbles
  • Users reported dreading the green text bubble because it means they are ostracized from the ‘cool group’  










Google is calling out Apple for using ‘peer pressure and bullying’ to convince consumers, specifically teens, that its iMessage is a status symbol and Android is a sign of lower class.

The accusations, published in a report from the Wall Street Journal, is about how the difference between green and blue text bubbles can lead to negative stigma that Apple is said to be profiting off of, according to Google.

WSJ’s report highlights surveys among teens and parents who react with ‘ew, that’s gross’ when another user had green chat bubbles instead of the coveted blue bubbles.

And this is Apple’s way of convincing teens to keep their iPhones or otherwise feel ostracized from the ‘cool group.’ 

Google Senior Vice President Hiroshi Lockheimer tweeted on Saturday: ‘Apple’s iMessage lock-in is a documented strategy.

‘Using peer pressure and bullying as a way to sell products is disingenuous for a company that has humanity and equity as a core part of its marketing. The standards exist today to fix this.’

Google is calling out Apple for using 'peer pressure and bullying' to convince consumers, specifically teens, that its iMessage is a status symbol and Android is a sign of lower class

Google is calling out Apple for using ‘peer pressure and bullying’ to convince consumers, specifically teens, that its iMessage is a status symbol and Android is a sign of lower class

Although Apple could end the feud by releasing iMessage to Android, its executives stand firm in not letting that happen.

According to Apple executive Phil Schiller, the move would ‘hurt us more than help us.’

Apple’s strategy has been known for some time – internal documents surfaced in April 2021 stating not allowing iMessage to crossover to Android is part of the Cupertino company’s masterplan to keep its customer base.

The documents came out during the Epic Games trial, which highlights Apple’s resistance of rolling out iMessage to Android.

Although Apple could end the feud by releasing iMessage to Android, its executives stand firm in not letting that happen. According to Apple executive Phil Schiller, the move would 'hurt us more than help us'

Although Apple could end the feud by releasing iMessage to Android, its executives stand firm in not letting that happen. According to Apple executive Phil Schiller, the move would ‘hurt us more than help us’

Email exchanges between Apple’s senior vice president Craig Federighi, Schiller, and other high level staff members said ‘iMessage on Android would simply serve to remove [an] obstacle to iPhone families giving their kids Android phones.’

Instead of banning text exchange between iOS and Android devices, Apple instead made its message blue to set itself apart from its rival.

The Cupertino-based company also provides its users with unique features, such as the dot-dot-dot that notifies iOS users when another is typing, which increased iMessage’s popularity among the crowd – and specifically teenagers.

Eddie Cue, who oversees Apple’s services business, stated in the emails that he had a team looking into making iMessage available on Android phones, according to an email that surfaced as part of the Epic Games litigation. 

The accusations, published in a report from the Wall Street Journal , is about how the difference between green and blue text bubbles can lead to negative stigma that Apple is said to be profiting off of, according to Google

The accusations, published in a report from the Wall Street Journal , is about how the difference between green and blue text bubbles can lead to negative stigma that Apple is said to be profiting off of, according to Google

‘We should go full speed and make this an official project,’ he wrote in an email to employees. ‘Google will instantly own messaging with this acquisition.’

Schiller wrote: ‘And since we make no money on iMessage what will be the point?’

In which Cue responded: ‘Do we want to lose one of the most important apps in a mobile environment to Google? They have search, mail, free video and growing quickly in browsers. 

‘We have the best messaging app and we should make it the industry standard. I don’t know what ways we can monetize it but it doesn’t cost us a lot to run.’



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