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Google begins rollout of RCS (rich communication services) text messaging for all Android users

Image via Google
Image via Google
Google will begin rolling out RCS support to all Android devices today. The rollout will happen in stages. Additionally, RCS will only be available through Google's Messages app. However, the rollout will eventually come to all Android devices, replacing the outdated SMS system currently employed.
Sam Medley,

One thing that iPhone users have long held over the head of their Android counterparts is Android’s use of SMS for default text messaging. That difference is drawing to a close; starting today, Google is rolling out RCS chat as the default texting platform to all Android users.

RCS, or rich communication services, chat can be considered the replacement for the older SMS, or short message service, system that has been used for text messages for over two decades. Unlike SMS, RCS natively supports read receipts, messaging over the Internet, high-quality images, and more.

RCS will be made available on Android via Google’s Messages app, so users may need to hop into the Google Play Store for a quick download and switch messaging apps. Google is rolling the service out bit by bit, so it may take a while before some users receive notification that their phone supports RCS.

RCS is a far more feature-rich platform than SMS, but it still has drawbacks. Unlike other texting services like Telegram or Apple’s iMessage, RCS does not support end-to-end encryption. Additionally, because of the decentralization of RCS servers, it is more difficult to add features to the platform. Additionally, it can be difficult to add support for specific devices, which is part of the reason why Google is using its own servers and why users must use Google’s Messages app for RCS on Android.

Have you received a notification that your Android handset now supports RCS? If so, how has the experience been so far? Let us know in the comments below.


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Sam Medley
Sam Medley - Senior Tech Writer - 1171 articles published on Notebookcheck since 2016
I've been a computer geek my entire life. After graduating college with a degree in Mathematics, I worked in finance and banking a few years before taking a job as a database administrator. I started working with Notebookcheck in October of 2016 and have enjoyed writing news and reviews. I've also written for other outlets including UltrabookReview and GeeksWorldWide, focusing on consumer guidance and video gaming. My areas of interest include the business side of technology, retro gaming, Linux, and innovative gadgets. When I'm not writing on electronics or tinkering with a device, I'm either outside with my family, enjoying a decade-old video game, or playing drums or piano.
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> Notebook / Laptop Reviews and News > News > News Archive > Newsarchive 2019 11 > Google begins rollout of RCS (rich communication services) text messaging for all Android users
Sam Medley, 2019-11-14 (Update: 2019-11-14)