The Beeper Mini iMessage saga seemed to have ended just before Christmas. Beeper offered the final iMessage workaround, which needed an iPhone or Mac in order to get iMessage working on Android. Needless to say, that sort of defeats the purpose, and Beeper confirmed that it would abandon the fight with Apple.
“In the new year, we’re shifting focus back to our long-term goal of building the best chat app on Earth,” Beeper said in mid-December. Nearly a month later, it looks like that’s exactly what the company is doing. And it apparently all starts with removing Beeper Mini from the Google Play store.
This time around, it’s not about iMessage. Well, not directly. When Beeper launched Beeper Mini, it only worked as an iMessage client on Android, using a loophole found by reverse-engineering iMessage.
Apple patched that exploit, citing security issues, and for good reason. You don’t want anyone to be able to get into your messaging system. The workaround involved tricking Apple’s iMessage authentication servers to allow Android phone numbers to get iMessages.
Also, I’ll repeat what I told you back then: Beeper was effectively stealing access to iMessage and charging Android users in the process.
Now that the fight is pretty much over and the iMessage experience via Beeper Mini has been degraded, there’s no point in focusing only on Apple’s messaging system. That’s what Beeper is doing by removing Beeper Mini from the Play Store.
The company removed the apps a few weeks ago, but it only announced the move on Thursday. Per 9to5Google, Beeper sent out a message to Beeper Cloud users informing them of the changes.
iMessage is now a “Labs” feature in Beeper Cloud, and Beeper Mini is momentarily gone from the Play Store. The app is likely to return with new features at some point soon, like support for other chat apps that are only available in Beeper Cloud.
Our #1 priority right now is the Beeper Android app. As we explained in our Product Roadmap post, our beautiful and fast Beeper Mini app is now the foundation of the brand new Beeper Android app. We’re currently in the process of adding all 14 other chat networks in. It’s a completely new app, with a new design, built for top speed and performance. Android friends – get excited 🙂
We’re also working on a big performance boost for Beeper Desktop, improvements to the LinkedIn, Instagram, and Google Messages bridges, among many other things!
That’s actually great news and something I noted last month. This is the way to compete against Apple and every other chat app developer. We’ll just have to wait and see what happens next with Beeper Mini.