Beeper lets you use iMessage on Android and Windows

As you probably already know, iMessage is Apple’s instant messaging platform. It was introduced in 2011, and Apple never made it available for Android or Windows. This has frustrated many users, especially those who want to switch from iOS to Android but don’t want to lose access to iMessage. With Beeper, Android users can finally have iMessage on other platforms – but it comes at a price.

What’s Beeper?

Beeper is not exactly new. In fact, it was announced in January 2021. The app was created by Pebble smartwatches founder Eric Migicovsky, and it basically acts as a hub for multiple messaging platforms, including Telegram, WhatsApp, Slack, Messenger, and iMessage.

The Beeper app is available on all major platforms: iOS, Android, Windows, macOS, and Linux. This means that you can access iMessage on any of these platforms through Beeper, and this is what makes the app even more interesting. After all, Beeper is neither the first nor the only messaging app hub. But how does it work?

When Beeper was announced, it relied on a real Apple device to work with iMessage. Users had the option of setting up a jailbroken iPhone or a Mac to act as an iMessage server. This way, the device would sync the messages with Beeper, so that the user could access them anywhere.

But now, things are a bit different. Beeper has ditched the old method in favor of a new cloud-hosted server. This means that Beeper now has its own Mac servers to log in users’ Apple ID and integrate iMessage with the app. As a result, users no longer need an Apple device to use iMessage with Beeper – the company takes care of everything.

How to use it?

At the moment, Beeper remains available as a private beta. Anyone interested in trying out Beeper can sign up to receive an invitation. I’ve asked the developers when the platform will become available for everyone, but there’s no estimate yet. What I’ve been told is that every week a new group of users is invited to join Beeper.

Once you’re accepted to join Beeper, you need to set up your account. At least during the beta period, the setup is done manually with the help of someone working at Beeper. I had to schedule a call with a representative from the app who helped me set everything up. According to Migicovsky, this helps the team to “spot any issues that come up and fix them immediately.”

After setting up the Beeper app on my Mac, I was able to log in to the Android app. iMessage was there and working as expected. Beeper uses iCloud to download messages from your Apple devices, so you’ll have access to all the conversations. However, previous chats are not downloaded to the app.

Since the app has access to your Apple ID, it also downloads your iCloud contacts to make it even easier to communicate with your friends and family through Beeper. And surprisingly, everything works as expected. I was able to send and receive iMessages from a Galaxy S22 Ultra. You can also send and receive media, voice messages, and even reactions.

It comes at a price

Yes, Beeper works as promised. But the app comes at a price. First, Beeper costs $10 per month. In order to set up your account, you must add your credit card to pay for the monthly subscription. However, the developers told me that, at least during the beta period, users can request a refund if they have any problems with the platform.

But, using Beeper comes at an even higher price than the $10 monthly subscription, and that is sharing your Apple ID with a third party. Beeper assures that the company only uses your Apple ID to access iMessage, but theoretically they could do whatever they want with your data.

According to Beeper, each user has an individual account created on a Mac mini server, so that the data cannot be accessed by others. The company also says that it restricts which employees have access to these computers. Still, it’s a risk you take by using the app.

And even if we consider all this, there is also the fact that sending messages through a third-party app compromises end-to-end encryption. Beeper itself admits that using the app is “less secure than using encrypted chat apps by themselves.” In the company’s words, its business model “is built on this trust.”

Is it worth it?

Beeper lets you use iMessage on Android and Windows.

With all this in mind, I’m not so sure that Beeper is worth it. The developers have certainly done an exceptional job of providing a way to let people use iMessage on Android. However, it comes with a lot of compromises. Worse than having your messages leaked by someone else is having other data related to your Apple ID, such as documents and photos.

I’m not saying that Beeper will do this intentionally, but they also can’t guarantee that this will never happen. For Android users who don’t have an iPhone or any other device, creating an Apple ID specifically for iMessage can be a good solution – but you’re still susceptible to having your messages seen by someone else.

I also asked Beeper about having any chance of Apple taking down the platform, but Migicovsky seems pretty confident that the Cupertino-based company won’t do that.

You can learn more about Beeper on its official website. Would you give the app a try? Let us know in the comments below.

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