Texting stinks. You can’t write long messages, or send big audio or video files, or large hi-res images, or get a little interface toast to let you know that someone is typing a response. It’s stuck in the 90s!
The good news is, a broad industry stard is finally poised to replace SMS: RCS, or Rich Communication Services, which makes texting work like Apple’s iMessage.
The bad news is, RCS needs to be supported by your carrier, your device maker, your messaging app. That’s a lot of ecosystem to cover, so rollout has been pathetically slow. T-Mobile recently announced support for some of the RCS stard under its Advanced Messaging bring, but only for a few phones. And of course, only on T-Mobile.
In a blog post dnesday, announced that it is purchasing RCS services company be Mobile throwing its weight behind the stard. It will build RCS into the foundation of Android, work with carriers across the globe to support the stard.
This is exactly what RCS needs. th integration into Android, building SMS apps that support RCS should be dramatically easier. The bar for basic SMS service will be raised, any device maker with an app or device that works only with old-school SMS will be considered obsolete. If the maker of the world’s largest mobile OS is petitioning carriers, support should spread there, too.
th any luck, within a year or two, you’ll be able to send RCS-based messages from any modern Android device to any other, on nearly any major carrier.
y this matters: The capabilities of SMS fall far behind over-the-top messaging services like Hangouts, atsApp, or Facebook Messenger. But it has one major advantage: universal support. This new messaging stard should let you enjoy features similar to OTT services without requiring the person on the other end to be using the same app as you.