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Elon Musk will make a new phone if Apple and Google ban Twitter

Elon Musk raises both hands in the air wearing black sunglasses and a black cowboy hat.

Now Elon might not want to fix phones.
Photo: Suzanne Cordeiro/AFP

Twitter’s new ruler Elon Musk makes so many statements on the platform that it’s hard to keep track. Only this week, Musk asked Twitter users over whether he should perform “general amnesty” to suspended accounts and got into one public fight above about the disgraced founder of FTX, Sam Bankman-Fried, part owner of Twitter. On Friday, Musk was at it again, telling people he may create an alternative phone to take on Apple and Google.

The tech billionaire’s comments were naturally made in response to a tweet directed at him by conservative podcaster and former OANN host Liz Wheeler. On Friday afternoon, Wheeler tweeted that Musk should make his own phone if Apple and Google decide to kick Twitter off their app stores. Twitter’s future in Apple and Google’s app stores has been a hot topic lately, given Musk’s commitment to “free speech” — as long as it do not insult him– and lax moderation of content.

“If Apple and Google start Twitter from their app stores, @elonmusk should produce his own smartphone. Half the country would love to ditch the biased, snooping iPhone and Android,” Wheeler so on Friday. “The man is building rockets to Mars, a stupid little smartphone should be easy, right?”

Three hours later, Musk told Wheeler he would build his own phone if Twitter was banned from Apple and Google’s app stores, the official gateways to iPhone and Android devices worldwide. In what may have been a tribute to Musk, who loves to ask people on Twitter, Wheeler had started a poll of his own asking people if they would use a “tELONphone.”

On as of publication time, “Yes” was the leading response, with 56.2% of the 52,707 votes cast.

“I certainly hope it doesn’t come to that, but yes, if there’s no other choice, I’ll make an alternative phone,” Musk tweeted.

Both Apple and Google have policies that prohibit apps in their stores from containing hateful or discriminatory speech, bullying, harassment, and sexually explicit content. In the wake of the January 6 attack on the US capital, Apple and Google kicked Parler off their app stores for his role in aiding insurgents plan the event, although it was allowed back after making changes. Kanye West, who legally changed his name to Ye, is allegedly in talks to buy Parler.

While Musk has declared his intention to build his own phone should Apple and Google cross him, it’s important to remember that this man says a lot of things that don’t end up happening. Remember Tesla Semi, which is three years past the deadline? Or the Cybertruck, as it turned out not to be bulletproof in a live demonstration? Heck, the only reason he owns Twitter is because he couldn’t figure out a way to get out of the deal.

Apple and Google did not respond to Gizmodo’s requests for comment by the time of publication.

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