A Guide to RCS, and Why It Makes Texting So Much Better

Future calendar year Verizon will be a part of AT&T and T-Mobile in preloading Android phones with Messages by Google as the default texting app. It truly is a huge gain for RCS, the chat protocol that Google has been pushing us all to adopt. But what particularly is RCS, and why do you need it?

The shorter edition: It truly is an up grade on the regular SMS/MMS texting expectations that smartphones have been applying from the starting. It delivers greater guidance for all the great increase-ons we are made use of to in our messaging applications, like read receipts and pictures, and it provides some additional security levels far too.

Sure, it can be a large amount like iMessage from Apple—though it can be not really that straightforward. It truly is considerably less of an app, and much more of a regular that applications can use.

The extensive edition: RCS, which stands for Prosperous Communication Providers, is a elementary regular somewhat than an app like WhatsApp or Telegram. It requires provider guidance to perform, which is why the backing of Verizon, AT&T, and T-Mobile is a huge deal (it now performs in dozens of nations around the world).

RCS permits capabilities this kind of as read receipts.

Screenshot: Google by way of David Nield

The Messages app on Android, produced by Google, is the most important way to get access to anything that RCS offers—though theoretically other applications can guidance the regular as properly. A single of the huge queries about the foreseeable future of RCS is whether or not Apple will concur to guidance it, putting Android customers on much more of an equivalent footing inside of the Messages app on iPhones and other Apple products.

SMS (Shorter Message Services) and MMS (Multimedia Messaging Services) were not genuinely developed for the modern day way that we talk as a result of our phones, and RCS attempts to resolve that. It provides or improves guidance for sharing huge-resolution pictures and video, group chatting, read receipts, video phone calls, and messages that truly go over and above 160 figures.

You can increase reactions to messages, see when an individual else is typing, and fall additional elements like GIFs, stickers, and your present-day area into conversations—features you could properly be made use of to and take as regular in other applications.

There are alterations and updates driving the scenes as properly. While SMS/MMS requires a info relationship to your mobile provider, RCS also performs above mobile networks or Wi-Fi. If you will not have a signal for no matter what purpose but you can obtain a wireless community, your concept can still go as a result of. 

As of June 2021, the regular also now delivers with it stop-to-stop encryption for just one-to-just one chats as properly. You really should see a modest lock image next to the Send out button in Messages (and a modest padlock next to despatched messages) confirming this. The characteristic really should be enabled by default if you’re chatting with an individual applying Messages with RCS enabled.

Rosa G. Rose

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