More reports on: Telecom Regulatory Authority of India, Telecom

Apple trying to sell its own anti-pesky call app to Trai

16 November 2017

Apple Inc, which was at loggerheads with the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India for not allowing the 'Do Not Disturb' (DND) pesky call complaint app on iPhones, has now offered to help develop a new app for the telecom regulator.

The government's DND app was launched on Google's Android platform last year, but Apple rejected requests for an iOS version saying that a government app with access to call and text logs could compromise its customers' privacy.

Apple had, however, sought a meeting on the DND app issue with Trai officials to discuss a new 'approach', according to Trai chairman R S Sharma.

Apple has now agreed to give limited help to the Indian government to develop an anti-spam mobile application for its iOS platform, says a Reuters report.                                          
Apple's app store refused to approve the anti-spam app developed by Trai saying that it cannot share user data that iPhone users in India have on their phones (See: Apple rejects Trai anti-spam app, says won't part with user data).

While it has all user data, Apple says its privacy policy does not allow it to reveal it in any form.

Apple had denied permission for the DND app as it requires users to share information such as location, contacts, call logs, SMSs, etc, which the firm says, is against its privacy policy.

Trai had launched the DND app in May, which crowd-sources information to identify telemarketers.

At its meeting with Trai officials, Apple's executives, however, said its current iOS platform might not allow for some of the government's requests, such as making call logs available within the app that would allow users to report them as spam.

Apple will instead help Trai develop an app with limited capabilities and would partially meet Trai's requirements.

The Reuters report said an Apple spokesman confirmed that the new iOS would help the regulator combat spam text messages, but did not comment on the app's potential inability to access call logs for reporting spam, as the Android version does.

Apple, which has been lobbying the government for tax breaks to expand its phone assembly operations in the country, where it reported doubling its revenue for the quarter ended 30 September, does not, however, intend to go by Indian regulations.

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