Apple executive Eddy Cue tried to bring iMessage to Android in 2013

Imagine if that actually happened.

What you need to know

  • The depositions of Eddy Cue and Scott Forstall in the Epic v. Apple trial have been released.
  • The documents reveal Cue pushed to bring iMessage to Android back in 2013.

iMessage almost came to Android back in 2013.

As reported by The Verge, according to a new deposition made public ahead of the Epic V. Apple trial, Eddy Cue, Apple’s Senior Vice President of Internet Software and Services, pushed to bring iMessage to Android back in 2013. The deposition contains an email exchange between Cue and Craig Federighi, Apple’s Senior Vice President of Software Engineering, in which Cue talked about bringing iMessage to the platform.

You can read the exchange between Cue and Federighi below:

(Note: we have reconstructed the email based on portions verified in the deposition since the underlying exhibit has not yet been made public. Typos have been corrected throughout.)

Cue: We really need to bring iMessage to Android. I have had a couple of people investigating this but we should go full speed and make this an official project …. 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.

Federighi: Do you have any thoughts on how we would make switching to iMessage (from WhatsApp) compelling to masses of Android users who don’t have a bunch of iOS friends? iMessage is a nice app/service, but to get users to switch social networks we’d need more than a marginally better app. (This is why Google is willing to pay $1 billion — for the network, not for the app.)…In the absence of a strategy to become the primary messaging service for [the] bulk of cell phone users, I am concerned [that] iMessage on Android would simply serve to remove an obstacle to iPhone families giving their kids Android phones.

You can read all of the newly public deposition documents here.

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