Apple reportedly shelves iPhone walkie-talkie project

It would have allowed iPhone owners to send messages without cell coverage, a report says.

Corinne Reichert Senior Editor
Corinne Reichert (she/her) grew up in Sydney, Australia and moved to California in 2019. She holds degrees in law and communications, and currently writes news, analysis and features for CNET across the topics of electric vehicles, broadband networks, mobile devices, big tech, artificial intelligence, home technology and entertainment. In her spare time, she watches soccer games and F1 races, and goes to Disneyland as often as possible.
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Corinne Reichert
iPhone XS

A walkie-talkie feature could have allowed nearby iPhone owners to send messages without cell coverage.

Angela Lang/CNET

Apple has reportedly put a stop to its walkie-talkie project for the iPhone, which would have allowed people in the same area to send messages without cell coverage. The reasons for shelving the project aren't yet known, The Information reported Monday, citing two sources.

The company already has a Walkie-Talkie app for the Apple Watch . It launched with 2018's WatchOS 5, letting users press a button on their smartwatch to talk and then hear another person's voice come back.

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Apple had been working with Intel on the project, The Information said Monday. Apple didn't immediately respond to a request for comment.

The tech giant was forced to suspend the Walkie-Talkie watch app last month after being alerted to a bug that could have let eavesdroppers listen in on iPhones .

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