Google and AT&T announced today that the wireless operator will use the Messages app and Rich Communicate Services (RCS) on all Android phones in the United States.
RCS is supposed to replace SMS and is shown to end users by Google as “Chat”. It enables features like tip indicators, read receipts, higher resolution images / videos and larger group chats, as well as interactive business messaging with stores and airlines. RCS works over mobile data, so chats can be sent over WiFi.
Google just rolled out this month End-to-end encryption for 1: 1 calls. In the meantime, Google has been updating the News app quite often over the past few weeks and has just introduced the ability to Star texts / photos / videos. A Messages for Web app enables users to view and reply to conversations from any browser.
In the US market, Verizon is now the loser as it sticks to its own implementation of RCS – with a separate app) rather than opting for the more universal standard. Last November, Google has completed a global roll-out of its cross-compatible RCS implementation direct to Messages users as it took wireless carriers some time to implement but otherwise moved to local providers. Meanwhile, Samsung also agreed last year Support Google’s RCS chat.
AT&T didn’t reveal any RCS rollout details today, but the carrier is expected to require all future devices to be pre-installed with the Google Messages app.
More information about Google Messages:
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