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Google blames Apple, then retracts blame, for Google Now snafu



The war of words between tech super-giants Apple and Google has ranged from oddly interesting to frustratingly petty.  I’m going to go ahead and file this one under ‘O’ for odd, because I’m not sure how else to describe it.

Our friends over at Phandroid reported last week on the rumor that the popular Google Now service was iOS bound.  There had been no definitive confirmation from either camp until a report surfaced today that Google Chairman Eric Schmidt was asked about the rumor at the Big Tent Summit in India.

His response, according to MacRumors, implied that Apple was simply sitting on the app, stating, “You’ll need to discuss that with Apple” and that “Apple has a policy of approving or disapproving apps that are submitted into its store, and some of the apps we make they approve and some of them they don’t.”

Going by Schmidt, it seemed like yet another chapter in the love-hate relationship Apple and Google both seem to enjoy.  Had the day ended here, we probably would have tossed this story on a pile of other stories about Google Maps.

But in three short hours, the story flipped because, through spokespeople to CNET, both Apple and Google confirmed that Google has not submitted Google Now for review.

It’s not clear why Schmidt chose to address the rumor in a way that put 100 percent of the blame on Apple’s shoulders.  Maybe he didn’t realize his answer gave that impression, but even the most naïve part of my brain won’t let me believe that as I reach the end of this sentence.

It’s possible that he has reached a certain level of frustration with Apple, to the point where he gives a wink and nudge to the tech world, knowing that most would lean towards believing that it was in fact Apple’s fault.

The funny thing about this issue is that, well, it isn’t an issue.  Strip away the rhetoric, and there’s no controversy here because there was never an app to approve or deny.

It seems fitting that, after all this, the most intriguing part of the story ends up being whether we’ll ever see Google Now on iOS.  We thought we had our answer today, but it ended up being nothing more than smoke and mirrors.  Let’s hope we get some clarity soon.

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  • James Rogers

    Eric Schmidt has a way of saying crazy things that later get retracted or dismissed. That’s probably one of many reasons he is no longer the CEO of such a large organization.