gundotraGoogle’s vice president of engineering Vic Gundotra said the Google Voice application, which is still in limbo after Apple declined to give it the greenlight for the app store, will come to the iPhone “one way or the other.” He made the statement while on-stage at the Crunchies award ceremony today.

Gundotra’s comment hints that Google Voice may not be a native app in Apple’s proper store, but rather a web version accessible through the browser. The two companies are at odds over what happened during the app store approval process. Apple says it “continues to study” the application and hasn’t approved it because it may “alter the iPhone’s distinctive user experience by replacing the iPhone’s core mobile telephone functionality,” according to a letter to the Federal Communications Commission. But Google has a completely different take on the story. It maintains that Apple did reject the app and that it did so because the app “duplicated the core dialer functionality”, according to parts of another unredacted FCC letter.

Gundotra’s full comments are below:

Michael Arrington: So what phone are you carrying?

Gundotra: Well, because of Google Voice, I have a dozen phones.

Arrington: Well, what do you have on you right now?

Gundotra: I carried a Nexus One today.

Arrington: So you were saying about the Droid?

Gundotra: I like the keyboard.

Arrington: Don’t you think this will hurt your relationship with partners who don’t get to make the official Google Phone?

Gundotra: I think some people are confused about our strategy. What we’re doing is going to consumers directly with the Nexus One as the first in a series. You’ll also see partners like Verizon and its Droid promoted. But there will always bee a flagship set of devices in a space where we make it easy for consumers to choose the best device and the best network.

Arrington: Will we see the next Nexus phone before the next iPhone? That gives you about five months.

Gundotra: We’re trying to innovate fast as possible. We aim to surprise people in 2010.

Arrington: What’s going on with Google Voice and the iPhone? Apple never said no.

Gundotra: Google Voice will come to the iPhone soon — one way or the other.