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Friday, September 18, 2009, 11:15 am PT (02:15 pm ET)

Apple fires back at Google over Voice app rejection claim

Hours after Google's letter to the FCC was published in its entirety, Apple has directly responded to the claim that it has formally rejected the Google Voice application from the iPhone App Store.

In a note to Silicon Valley Insider, an Apple representative Friday reiterated what the company said in its own letter to the U.S. Federal Communications Commission in August: That it has not rejected the application, but it has not accepted it either.

"We do not agree with all of the statements made by Google in their FCC letter," the Apple rep reportedly said. "Apple has not rejected the Google Voice application and we continue to discuss it with Google.”

Both Google and Apple sent letters to the FCC last month, after the commission began inquiry into the Google Voice situation. Apple retains complete control over the iPhone and iPod touch App Store, and has not approved Google Voice for download.

When Google's letter was first revealed, it was heavily redacted, concealing specific details and preventing the public from reading the true nature of the exchange between it and Apple. But after receiving numerous Freedom of Information Act requests — and after Apple published its own letter in its entirety — Google opted to ask the FCC to publish the document un-redacted. It was released Friday.

In that document, Google alleged that Phil Schiller, Apple's senior vice president of Worldwide Product Marketing, personally told the company that the Google Voice telephony application was outright "rejected" from the App Store.

Friday's response from Apple in a prompt fashion is unique for the Cupertino, Calif., company, which rarely speaks out publicly on such matters.

Also a part of the FCC investigation is AT&T, who, in their own letter, denied any part in the Google Voice situation. AT&T said that Apple has complete control over the App Store, with a few contractual exceptions that deal with network bandwidth issues. Apple has supported AT&T's claims.