Screen shot 2009 09 18 at 19.39.19 Google says Apple DID reject the Google Voice app

UPDATE: See below for Apple’s response.

Here’s an interesting one. Who do you believe – Google or Apple?

In July, the US Federal Communications Commission (FCC) asked Apple, Google and AT&T to answer questions about the non-appearance of Google’s Voice app in the iPhone app store.

When their answers were made public AT&T said it was nothing to do with them while Apple said the app had not been rejected and that they were still investigating it. Google’s answer? That was kept private behind a big fat “REDACTED” label.

Today Google finally made their side of the story public following several Freedom of Information requests. Google’s story? Apple DID reject the Google Voice app. Their exact words:

“Apple’s representatives informed Google that the Google Voice app was rejected because Apple believed the app duplicated the core dialer function of the iPhone. The Apple representatives indicated that the company did not want applications that could potentially replace such functionality.”

That’s pretty different to Apple’s side of the story. In their FCC submission they claimed:

“Contrary to published reports, Apple has not rejected the Google Voice application, and continues to study it. The application has not been approved because, as submitted for review, it appears to alter the iPhone’s distinctive user experience by replacing the iPhone’s core mobile telephone functionality and Apple user interface with its own user interface for telephone calls, text messaging and voicemail.”

So, who is lying? Given Apple’s history of app rejection, it’s easy to side with Google here but we can’t be sure.

Meanwhile, Google is working on a web-based version of the Google Voice app, which won’t need Apple approval and will supposedly offer the same functions. Great news for Google Voice users but not much help for those of use outside the US frustratedly awaiting any sign of getting access to the service.

UPDATE:

All Things Digital‘s John Paczkowski has received a comment from Apple regarding Google’s statement.

“We do not agree with all of the statements made by Google (GOOG) in their FCC letter. Apple has not rejected the Google Voice application and we continue to discuss it with Google.”

This story is going to run and run…