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Apple blocks Google from running its internal iOS apps

Apple blocks Google-GBO

Google has joined Facebook in the fight against Apple’s banning spree

Apple has shut down Google’ ability to distribute its internal iOS apps ealier today, following a similar shutdown that was issued to Facebook earlier this week. A person familiar with the situation told The Verge that early versions of Google Maps, Hangouts, Gmail and other pre-release beta apps stopped working alongside employee-only apps like a Gbus app for transportation and Google’s internal café app.

TechCrunch and Bloomberg’s Mark Bergen reported late Thursday that the app’s functionality had been restored. Apple appears to have worked more closely with Google to fix the situation.

An Apple spokesperson told BuzzFeed earlier that: “We are working together with Google to help them reinstate their enterprise certificates very quickly.”

Apple’s move to block Google’s developer certificate came just a day after Google disabled its Screenwise Meter app following press coverage. Google’s private app was designed to monitor how people use their iPhones, similar to Facebook’s research app. Google’s app also relied on Apple’s enterprise program, which enables the distribution of internal apps within a company.

Earlier in a statement over Facebook’s certificate removal, Apple warned that “any developer using their enterprise certificates to distribute apps to consumers will have their certificates revoked.” Apple is clearly sticking to its rules and applying them equally to Facebook, Google, and likely many other companies that get caught breaking Apple’s rules in the future.

Facebook’s internal apps have since resumed functioning, as the social network stated that Apple had restored it’s enterprise certificate. Similarly, both Apple and Google’s statements made it clear that the companies are working together to fix Google’s issues.

Meanwhile, there’s growing evidence that a number of companies are using Apple’s enterprise program to distribute apps to consumers. iOS developer Alex Fajkowski has discovered that Amazon, DoorDash, and Sonos all distribute beta versions of their apps to non-employees. Apple may be forced to take action against these apps, or to even revamp its entire enterprise program in the future.

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