While France is known for their great wines, more recently they've been better known for their whiny threat and attitude towards Apple
In late April, the European Commissioner for the "Internal Market," Thierry Breton held video conferences with Google and Apple CEOs calling for the U.S. tech giants to support Europe's competing 'StopCovid' app. France sought an exception from Apple|Google protocols so that their Euro app would work on Apple and Android phones.
Breton agitatingly stated at the time that "It is the responsibility of companies such as Apple to do their utmost to develop suitable technical solutions to make the national apps work. Coordination with EU member states’ health authorities is paramount."
Last week France's Digital Minister Cedric O lashed out at Apple as well. Business Insider reported that "French digital minister Cedric O attacked Apple during an interview, saying the tech giant has been uncooperative in helping France to build its contact-tracing app.
The app is due to launch on June 2, and although O said it will work on all devices, he added: "Apple could have helped us to make sure the app would work even better on iPhones."
Today Bloomberg reports echoed that Cedric O, France’s digital minister lashed out at Apple: "Apple could have helped us make it work even better. A company that has never been in a better economic shape is not helping the government to fight the crisis. We will remember that." Of course that's a direct threat plain and simple. How that will play out exactly is unknown today, but there's little doubt that the Minister will exact his punishment against Apple when the time is right.
Beyond France, other countries have tried to find technical workarounds, but few governments have had success in building a working app without following Apple and Google’s rules.
We reported on one such case last week in a report titled " While the Colombian Government began using CoronApp for Contact Tracing, it's failure has them turning to the Apple|Google Standard."
The Colombian government didn't whine or threaten Apple. Rather, they got to work on adopting the Apple|Google protocols in their app so as to better serve their citizenry.
In April we posted a report titled "Last minute decision has Germany backing the Apple-Google Contact Tracing Smartphone Technology over Europe's PEPP-PT." I don't remember any whining done by Germany leveled at Apple.
The UK also decided to not originally adopt Apple and Google protocols like France. But instead of whining and threatening Apple they've decide to rethink their App. According to Bloomberg, "just days before the app trial started, the U.K. government published a contract issued to a Swiss engineering firm, asking it to look into adding Apple and Google’s system to its own. The U.K. government said it continues to pursue its centralized model but is keeping all options under review."
The report also pointed to the Dutch government opting the use of the Google and Apple approach after privacy experts criticized several independent tracing apps developed for the country.
On the flip side, North Dakota has aired an issue with the Apple|Google system in that it "only serves to notify individuals, rather than giving that information to governments and other the contact tracers trying to stop outbreaks."
While that issue may anger some "governments," Apple and Google purposely designed it that way in fear that governments could possibly abuse the collected data for other nefarious reasons far beyond it's original mission of contract tracing the Wuhan Virus within a given population.
Of course this doesn't mean that the Apple|Google system is without some problems. For instance, the Bloomberg report points out that "The main technological barrier that governments face is that Apple phones don’t let apps send out Bluetooth 'pings' when the phone is locked or the app is running in the background. That means people would have to walk around with their public-health app constantly open and their phones unlocked if they wanted nearby phones to pick up their signal -- something people aren’t likely to do." Something reasonable like this is likely something tha both Apple and Google could iron at some point in time.
For more on this read the full Bloomberg report that is on their technology home page today titled "Apple-Google Virus-Tracking Rules Put Apps in a Privacy Bind."
In the end, some countries have argued with Apple and Google over their protocols, yet it's only France that has made it their mission to whine about Apple loudly in the media and actually go out of their way to send out a threat that they'll remember that.
Please Mr. Cedric O, head of Digital affairs, elaborate on your publicly made threat against Apple and how that will actually play out if Apple doesn't finally bend to your will.
One thing is for sure, many in the digital world will remember your threat Mr. O and remind the world of it when and if you ever act on that veiled threat.