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Fight to keep Google Voice app off iPhone catches FCC's eye - USATODAY.com



Who should control wireless applications customers, carriers or handset makers? That is the core question being considered by the Federal Communications Commission, which has asked Apple and AT&T, the iPhone's exclusive U.S. distributor, to explain...
no doubt mobile is the future of digital media as "post pc devices" take hold. this battle may be over Google Voice - but this will also create new opportunities and challenges for the recording industry.

Fight to keep Google Voice app off iPhone catches FCC's eye - USATODAY.com

Fight to keep Google Voice app off iPhone catches FCC's eye

By Leslie Cauley, USA TODAY


Who should control wireless applications — customers, carriers or handset makers?

That is the core question being considered by the Federal Communications Commission, which has asked Apple and AT&T, the iPhone's exclusive U.S. distributor, to explain why Google's free voice application, called "Google Voice," is banned from the device. The app allows consumers to use one Google-issued number for office, home and cell. It also blocks telemarketers, transcribes voice mail and offers unlimited free texting.


Google, which is trying to become a major player in wireless, also was asked to explain its business practices. Comments are due Aug. 21.
While Google Voice might have been the trigger, the FCC's mission is actually much loftier: making sure the mobile Web is an open, consumer-friendly environment like the Internet.



What regulators don't want is for the mobile Web to follow in the footsteps of cable TV or traditional (voice) wireless, where operators tightly control the consumer experience.


The Apple-AT&T-Google dustup is the first shot in what is destined to become a global war among carriers, device makers and software developers, predicts Jagdish Rebello, principal analyst with iSuppli, a market research firm. With mobile applications red hot, Apple, Google and others "are trying to muscle in on the wireless carriers" for their share of the action.


The clash, he says, will result in "a dramatic shift for the global cellphone industry."