Apple originally wanted to bring iMessage to other platforms, but it later decided that it could encourage Apple users to switch to other competing devices, hence why executives then decided to lock people into the ecosystem with the seemingly simple chat application. FaceTime has sort of become available on Android and other devices, although there are a lot of limitations, and it only works in the browser.
Hiroshi Lockheimer, Senior Vice President of Platforms and Ecosystems, posted a tweet in which he accuses Apple of “using peer pressure and bullying as a way to sell products” and locking people in the ecosystem. The tweet mainly refers to iMessage, but it’s related back to Apple and its products.
Google introduced RCS messaging not long ago, and while the feature is available to hundreds of millions of users worldwide, it’s still not fully supported in every region, it’s still not fully encrypted, and it lacks support and features in some areas. Lockheimer has been criticizing Apple for years for its behaviour, and for not supporting RCS, which would allow Android and Apple devices to follow a common standard, offering an easier and safer way for consumers to communicate with each other.
Other Google executives have encouraged Apple to adopt the RCS standard in previous years, but Apple always refused, citing security and other concerns. Google recently started supporting iMessage reactions with emojis to help bridge the gap between the two standards. While that works well, there are still a lot of features missing, and a lot of security enhancements could be made to make messaging safer between the two platforms.
Apple is unlikely to give in anytime soon, and it could potentially make other integrations even harder for Google and other OEMs to support the platform. There are various ways hacky ways to make iMessage work on Windows computers and Android devices, but they require a lot of setups, and none of the methods ended up being stable enough, and Apple also purposely broke some to stop people from sending messages.