Apple is reportedly planning to expand its messaging service, iMessage, to Android and that it could make the announcement at its annual WWDC conference, which begins on June 13. The move would come at a time when both Google and Apple are struggling to capture the messaging market. Facebook currently dominates the space with WhatsApp (over 1 billion monthly active users) and Messenger (over 900 million monthly active users). Last month Google announced two apps — Allo and Duo — to make another attempt to stake its claim in this space. Also Read - Apple TV Plus for free: PS5 owners get six months subscription free of costAlso Read - This photo shot with iPhone X by an Indian wins iPhone Photography Awards
The move is part of Apple s new focus on building services that are available across the platforms and not just stay exclusive to iOS, MacDailyNews reports. The announcement would come at a time when Apple is witnessing a slowdown in iPhone sales, while Android smartphone shipments and adoption continues to grow. Bringing its services on Android might help lock in users to its services. It won’t be the first Apple service to go live on Android, Apple Music being the first. Apple had also launched a move to iOS app on the Google Play Store, Also Read - Top Apple gadgets, accessories for less than Rs 15,000 for Apple fans
It will be an uphill task for Apple to gain a foothold in the messaging space. So far it has been able to lock in users by making it the default messaging app on iPhone, so iPhone owners automatically become iMessage users when they text other iPhone users, irrespective of whether they knew it would go as an iMessage or not (or whether the recipient was an iPhone owner or not). Meanwhile Facebook and even Google for that matter are looking at the next level of innovation in messaging with AI powered chatbots.
Facebook is already encouraging brands to create their own chatbots for Messenger. It also dabbled with ‘M’ a personal assistant service. Google, meanwhile, unveiled Allo at I/O last month, which comes with an integrated Google Assistant, which is based on AI and something it has also implemented in the Gboard keyboard for iOS.
It looks very difficult to see why Android users would want to download another messaging app just to interact with iPhone users, especially when there is no differentiation with existing messaging apps. For what it’s worth, WhatsApp alone provides all features that iMessages does and most people already use WhatsApp. So what is Apple thinking of achieving with iMessage for Android?
If you are still interested in getting iMessage for Android, you don’t need to wait for Apple’s announcement. Check out PieMessage, which is a work around way to get iMessage on Android.