Apple has made it clear that it has no plans to transfer iMessage to Android. They know it keeps their users on the platform and are apparently okay with the green bubble bullying of Android users which is a result of the broken messaging experience that iPhone users are complaining about. when talking to someone without a phone like theirs.
Because there may never be an official iMessage app or service on Android, the messaging industry has repeatedly tried to create an unofficial iMessage client. Most are weird implementations, including one that wanted you to buy an old iPhone and then set it up as a makeshift server to relay the iMessage experience to your Android phone. Yes, it was as bad as it sounds.
The following attempt comes from a company called Sunbird and they believe they have the real experience you wanted.
Sunbird has created an all-in-one email client that “is the first and only fully-featured iMessage app for Android”. Let me try to explain what this means exactly.
According to Sunbird, that means setting up iMessage on your Android phone only takes an Android phone and about 60 seconds. It is not necessary to have a personal server or an Apple device or desktop software. Again, this doesn’t sound like those weird fake server ideas we’ve seen in the past.
It also means you get fully encrypted messages, internet messaging, quality media, group chats, reactions and endorsements, live typing indicators and read receipts. Perhaps more importantly, it means your messages (from your Android phone) will appear as blue bubbles on an iPhone.
However, Sunbird does more than just iMessage. It will also act as your text messaging app, and it can connect to WhatsApp (with group messaging) and Facebook Messenger. The plan is to add Telegram, RCS, Signal, Line, Slack, Discord, and Instagram down the road. Again, this is an all-in-one email service.
It sounds too good to be true and you need to know what the catch is? At this point, Sunbird is not revealing any takes. They say all the right things to get people to sign up for a beta list to test the app.
For example, they claim that Sunbird “does not store user data”, which would refer to login credentials and messages you send. Other services like this use relay services or need to store your credentials to work properly, but Sunbird keeps saying they don’t do any of that. In fact, during a briefing with them, they kept pointing out that they tried to build this in a way that didn’t store any data.
It’s not open source, because they’ve built some type of solution that they want to keep locked away. They believe they have fixed all the past issues that made iMessage on Android impossible.
What about the cost? It has to be a subscription model, right? Apparently not yet. Sunbird told us the service would be free and if they wanted to monetize later they could, but for now they just want people to use it. It’s a bit of a red flag for me. There’s nothing sneakier than building a service you know people might like, telling them it’s free, and then turning on the credit card machine once they’re well engaged. .
And that’s all I have for now. Sounds like the best idea for iMessage for Android yet, but I haven’t tested it and don’t know when I’ll be able to. Right now, Sunbird is asking the world to sign up to test Sunbird in a closed beta. They’ll be handing out invites before they open it at some point (or until they sell the tech, otherwise how are they going to make money?).
If you are interested, you can register on the Sunbird website.
#iMessage #Android #Sunbird