After serious privacy concerns, Sunbird disables its iMessage app for Android.

After serious privacy concerns, Sunbird disables its iMessage app for Android.

1 minute, 39 seconds Read

Lawrence Bonk

The Android messaging app Sunbird has left the building. According to 9to5Google, the app has been completely shut down as a result of serious privacy concerns. This comes after the app’s partnership with Nothing, which served as the inspiration for the Nothing Chats app from the smartphone manufacturer, came under more scrutiny. Before the aforementioned privacy issues were discovered and the Nothing’s app was removed, it had only been available for less than one day.

According to a Reddit announcement, the app has been removed from Google’s Play Store, though the parent company claims that this closure is only temporary. Short story, perhaps? The Nothing collaboration brought attention to the fact that Sunbird was a niche product that did n’t quite work. Full end-to-end encryption was promised, but many users could access private user messages by taking advantage of flaws. For instance, 9to5Google discovered more than 630 000 files with this flaw. That does n’t seem too secure, call me crazy.

Anyone who was paying attention—which was n’t many until Nothing got involved—saw the writing on the wall for Sunbird. While making lofty promises about the interoperability of secure iMessage and Android chat, the company missed several launch deadlines. Sunbird closed the Zoom chat when things got too heated during the company’s first announcement presser in 2022, according to ArsTechnica, and refused to answer questions about the apps ‘ underlying technology and related privacy concerns. Reporters speculated that Sunbird was n’t a” serious company” because of this.

The enormous elephant in the room, which is the size of an apple, is also present. In 2024, the tech behemoth will support RCS text messaging, completely doing away with the need for workarounds like Sunbird. In other words, the gap between the green and blue bubbles is closing.

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Sunbird’s official website makes no mention of the closure despite being removed from the Play Store and continuing to extol the apps ‘ unrivaled end-to-end encryption. Additionally, the business has not yet released a statement in public.

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