Apple Shuts Down App That Brought iMessage to Android

apple shuts down beeper mini imessage for android app
In Short
  • Beeper Mini was a new Android app unveiled just a few days ago, and it brought iMessage support to Android phones.
  • Apple has intervened and patched the techniques used by the Beeper Mini app to enable iMessage on Android.
  • Apple has made a statement on Beeper Mini and its techniques, citing security & privacy concerns for their action.

Apple has shut down Beeper Mini! Yeah, the new app that turned green bubbles to blue is currently not working due to Apple’s intervention. Essentially, Beeper Mini brought iMessage to Android – we tested it out last week – and it worked quite well. However, as expected, it seems like Apple does not want iMessage to exist on Android.

Over the weekend, users of Beeper Mini (which costs $1.99 a month) took to Reddit and pointed out that the app was no longer working. The error code received by the users read, “Failed to lookup on server: lookup request timed out.” My own Beeper Mini app shows the same error code when trying to send messages.

A company representative responded on the Reddit thread, stating “Dealing with an outage on the Beeper Mini side. Aware of it and already working on getting it fixed.” A post was also made on X by the company handle.

Yesterday, the devs again tweeted that their work on fixing the issue continues, so it seems like they have a few ideas on how to bring back the iMessage functionality on Android.

Apple Clearly Does Not Want iMessage on Android!

Apple has blocked the methods through which Beeper Mini functioned. When Beeper Mini first launched last week, it was touted as an iMessage-emulating app for Android with the same end-to-end encryption that was present on iPhones.

While there is some hope for Beeper Mini to start working again, it is unclear if the app will ever work again. Apple has made its stance clear on this app. In a statement shared with The Verge by Apple’s Senior PR Manager Nadine Haija, she said, “At Apple, we build our products and services with industry-leading privacy and security technologies.”

imessage for android beeper mini app
Image Courtesy: Beeper

Continuing, Apple essentially stated that Beeper did not meet this standard. “[Apple] took steps to protect our users by blocking techniques that exploit fake credentials in order to gain access to iMessage.”

Moreover, Apple continued to state using these techniques (utilized by Beeper Mini) could increase the likelihood of “metadata exposure,” and well, result in a higher amount of “unwanted messages, spam, and phishing attacks.” Overall, Apple has shut down Beeper Mini and even painted them in a bad light.

“These techniques posed significant risks to user security and privacy” – Apple, via The Verge

There is a lot of debate on which side should be supported. US senator Elizabeth Warren has called out Apple on X saying that “Big tech executives are protecting profits by squashing competitors“. Nevertheless, for a few days, iMessage was cross-platform, and the overall functionality was super smooth!

Screenshot of Elizabeth Warren tweet about Apple shutting down Beeper mini
Source: Elizabeth Warren on X (formerly Twitter)

Beebom’s Take: Should iMessage for Android Be Allowed?

Beeper Mini Android app
Image Courtesy: Beeper

iMessage for Android should definitely be a thing in the future. Once it exists, green bubbles & blue bubbles will be friends again. Cross-platform messaging will be ‘easy and secure’ – exactly as the US Senator put it. However, I do not think Apple wants iMessage to be on Android.

While developers such as Beeper and the previous attempt by Nothing & Sunbird via the Chats app could continue trying to bring iMessage to Android, Apple might keep squashing new attempts.

Overall, iMessage is a key selling point for Apple’s products, especially in the US. In order to protect this USP, Apple plans to keep iMessage off other platforms. For the consumer, this brings a few issues – so unless Apple is forced to bring iMessage on Android, it probably won’t happen.

For now, the olive branch Apple extended to Android users and the world is limited to adopting RCS messaging. This will bring slightly better and secure messaging between Android and iOS. However, in true Apple fashion, these messages will continue to be shown in green to differentiate them from iMessage on iPhone.

Maybe, one day, we will see an official iMessage Android app released by Apple, even if it’s paid, and everyone will be able to happily stay in group chats without being shamed for their messages being a different color.

What are your thoughts on Apple shutting down Beeper Mini, the iMessage emulator for Android? Let us know in the comments below.

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