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iMessage reportedly coming to Android — but there’s a catch

iMessage on Android with Beeper
(Image credit: Beeper)

Using iMessage on Android has long been a wish list item for many looking to unify Apple's messaging platform outside of its devices. And if a new app that just arrived on the scene works as advertised, we'll have a new entry for our best chat apps list.

Eric Migicovsky, CEO and founder of Pebble (famed wearable manufacturer) just launched Beeper, a new messaging client that aims to house everything from iMessage to WhatsApp to Signal and Slack. Facebook Messenger, Discord and even Google Meet are listed services. The only problem? It's gonna cost you $10 per month.

Beeper, which you can sign up for today, is accomplishing iMessage on Android with some wild and wacky tricks. Migicovsky literally referred to the implementation of iMessage on Android and other platforms as "using some trickery." 

The first method, according to the Beeper FAQ, is to install its Mac app on "a Mac that is always connected to the internet," which will create a "bridge" from the Mac to your Android phone.

But what about all the Android users that don't have Macs? Hilariously, Migicovsky is flush with jailbroken iPhone 4s that he will send out to those who need it.

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Beeper is going to run on Android, iOS, macOS, Windows and Linus, though we could not find iOS or Android versions on their respective app stores — and Beeper doesn't present download links on its site. Beeper instead asks you to sign up to get access. 

The Beeper FAQ page explains that it's built around an open source federated messaging protocol known as Matrix, which enables Beeper to incorporate all of the following applications:

  • Android Messages (SMS)
  • Beeper network
  • Discord
  • Facebook Messenger
  • Hangouts
  • iMessage
  • Instagram
  • IRC
  • Matrix
  • Signal
  • Skype
  • Slack
  • Telegram
  • Twitter
  • Whatsapp

And because every app needs a dark mode, Beeper's site notes to expect it in the next update.

That being said, this seems exactly like the kind of thing that Apple has lawyers around to shut down. So, stay tuned, reader, to see if Beeper can keep beeping or if Tim Cook's squad will shut it down.

Henry T. Casey

Henry is an editor writer at Tom’s Guide covering streaming media, laptops and Apple. Prior to joining Tom's Guide — where he's the self-described Rare Oreo Expert — he reviewed software and hardware for TechRadar Pro, and interviewed artists for Patek Philippe International Magazine. You can find him at your local pro wrestling events, and looking for the headphone adapter that he unplugged from his iPhone.