The history between Google Voice and the iPhone go back a long time: Google submitted an official application for the service to Apple in the middle of last year, but Apple rejected the app because it "duplicated features" that were already present on the iPhone. Not only did they reject the app, they also pulled all other GV apps already available on the store. Fast forward to September this year, and Apple eased up on their App Store restrictions, and several third-party GV apps started appearing in the store shortly after. Today, almost a year-and-a-half after it was initially rejected, the official Google Voice app is available in the App Store. With the official GV app, you can send and receive calls and texts, get access to your voicemail, and even get push notifications. The app is currently only available to iPhones in the U.S. running iOS 3.1 or higher, but will be made available internationally in 2011 and could eventually make its way to the iPod Touch and iPad, as well.
This news may not seem important to Android or BlackBerry users, who have been enjoying their own Google Voice apps for a while now, but it's a pretty big victory for iOS users. The rejection of the official GV app last year was the last straw for some users who grew sick of Apple's walled garden approach, but I'm glad that we've finally gotten over the hurdle and that the official GV app is finally in the App Store. Sure, the App Store still may not be as open as other platforms, but it's certainly a heck of a lot better than it's been in the past. If you're an iPhone user interested in checking out the official GV app, you can find it right here.