Facebook Wants Apple Users Change their Default Messaging App

Facebook officials have intensified criticism of Apple in recent months, which cuts down on in-app purchases, along with iPhone manufacturer restrictions on gaming apps and ad targeting. Now, as Apple has emerged from software changes that suggest it is starting to bend, Facebook wants something else: the option to make its Messenger app the default messaging tool on iPhones.

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“We feel that people were given information by Stan Chudnowski, the vice president of Facebook in charge of their Messenger app, saying that people should be able to select different messaging apps and defaults on their phones.” “Generally, everything is moving in this direction.”

Chudnovksy said that Facebook has, over the years, asked Apple to consider sending default messages. Apple never agreed. Apple’s message app is a core feature of its mobile software that encourages people to purchase their devices. The app’s encryption of messages is also a cornerstone of the company’s privacy for consumers. Google’s rival Android mobile operating system already lets users choose their default messaging application.

Recent changes to its mobile software have provided another opening for complaints to Facebook and others.

Earlier this month, Apple released an update to its mobile operating system, iOS 14, which for the first time allows people to select the default web browser and email app, which is Google’s Chrome browser and Microsoft’s Outlook such as Apple Are not made by And at the end of 2019, it started allowing its Siri virtual assistant to send messages through other apps.

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Opening the messaging defaults to other apps would likely have major implications, and Apple did not extend such flexibility for messaging. For example, when people use Facebook Messenger on one iPhone, messages sent to another iPhone’s number are automatically sent to Apple’s Messages app.

Facebook Wants Apple Users Change their Default Messaging App
Facebook’s head of Messenger, Stan Chudnovsky. Photo courtesy of Facebook.

Conversely, on Android phones, an external app such as Messenger can receive all texts – even known as SMS texts sent via the mobile carrier to the device’s phone number – if the user app Sets as the default.

“For any other developer in the [messaging] space, this is not a level playing field on Apple’s platform,” Chudnowski said. If Apple took an approach similar to Android’s iOS messages, he said, it would “allow us to compete more fairly where iOS is dominant.”

Such complaints criticize other app developers who advocate Apple. This week a group called the Alliance for App Fairness, organized by Epic Games, Spotify, Tile, and Match Group, said it was against the iPhone maker’s control over iOS app distribution, 30% fee on in-app transactions, and other “monopolists.” Behavior. “

Like Facebook, Apple faces antitrust investigations regarding its size and market power.

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The spokesperson for the coalition, Sarah Maxwell, said in a statement, “Users should be free and qualified to make decisions about music, mail, chat, or any other necessary app,” Apple declined to comment for this story gave.

Although Facebook is not a member of the coalition, its executives have been raping Apple over its App Store policies in recent months, with CEO Mark Zuckerberg telling employees that the company uses the App Store to “monopolize rent.” Apple has ensured that its charges are in line with other platforms, and its control over the App Store creates a better experience for consumers.

Facebook’s high-pressure campaign seems to be operating on other fronts. Apple made a separate, privacy-oriented change to iOS 14, allowing users to require non-Apple apps to track their activity. This change limited the ability to target advertisers, a serious risk for Facebook and some of its customers. After some time, Facebook and a host of other advertising companies complained that the market would face problems, Apple said it would delay implementing the change until spring.

Shortly after this story was published on Friday, Facebook said Apple would temporarily waive its 30% tax on in-app transactions for a new Facebook feature, allowing its users to pay for online events Will get it. Facebook had previously criticized Apple’s refusal to waive its fee. On Friday, Facebook spokesman Joe Osborne said Apple agreed to withdraw its 30% cut to facilitate payments, which would help struggling businesses, by the end of the year.

Facebook’s Chances Are Low

In deepening its battle with Apple, Facebook may invite backlash from a company that supplies a large and relatively attractive percentage of social network users. Apple CEO Tim Cook has long been a staunch critic of Facebook’s advertising-driven business model; Apple makes most of its money selling hardware.

While Facebook users are mostly on Android devices in their major developing markets like India, Apple’s iPhones are more widespread in wealthy countries like the US and parts of Europe, where advertising rates are higher. Cook jabbed at Facebook’s sullied data privacy record, which resulted in a $ 5 billion federal trade commission fine last year. Facebook Messenger, unlike iMessage, is not encrypted by default, although Facebook has said it is working to fully encrypt the app as part of its push to build more private services.

If Apple opens default access to other messaging apps, Facebook is prepared to instigate Apple to gain potential exposure.

More than one billion people use Messenger every month, making it the world’s largest messaging service. Facebook does not know how much money it makes from ads in Messenger, and its previous attempts to make money in the app with business chat tools for customer support have faltered. Still, Messenger is an important linchpin in an effort to unify its suite of apps, including Facebook’s Instagram and WhatsApp, so that people can send messages with them.

Facebook has asked Apple many times over the years to open default messaging access, said Chudanowski, a former PayPal executive who took over from Facebook’s David Marcus to lead the Messenger team in 2018. “The main guess is that messaging drives hardware sales,” he said when asked why Apple has not considered Facebook’s request.

Chetan Sharma, who runs a consulting firm that advises companies in the mobile and wireless industries, said that it is unlikely that Apple could access other messaging apps on its device by default — at least, of course.

According to Sharma, giving default access to other messaging apps will reduce people’s dependence on Apple hardware, as the most used social apps are also available on Android phones and are increasingly providing richer features, such as mobile payments and Video Chatting

“In my mind, it would be very strategic for Apple to take control of iMessage,” he said. “It is not in their interest until it becomes an important antitrust issue.”

This story has been updated to include Apple’s decision to temporarily waive a 30% fee on the app’s app transactions for the new Facebook event feature.

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