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RCS as Android’s New Standard for Text Messaging

rcs vs sms

Google is always on the brink of pushing the limits in one field or another. This time, it’s partnering with mobile operators across the world to find how to implement the next step in messaging.

It might seem that Short Message Service (SMS) might be replaced with Rich Communications Service (RCS), at least as Android’s new standard for text messaging.

It’s been more than 10 years since we’ve been gifted the SMS – a service that’s become a big part of everybody’s lives – but it might be time to move to something that’s better at sending photos and video through text messages.

Google believes this little conundrum could be fixed with the help of RCS. Nick Fox, vice president of communications products at Google, said that since messaging is such a central place in all of our lives, it should evolve in line with the other tech we have today.

“Today marks an important step forward in bringing a better messaging experience for Android users everywhere, and we’re thrilled to collaborate with our partners across the industry to make this happen,” he said.

One of Google’s biggest collaborators is the GSM Association (GSMA), an organization that has centralized roughly 800 carriers and over 250 companies. Its focus is on setting standards and advancing the Global System for Mobile (GSM).

But with Google on board with its efforts, GSMA will soon see the progress of bringing RCS to the world significantly expedited. Mobile carriers that have jumped on board include Deutsche Telekom, América Móvil, Sprint, Bharti Airtel Ltd, Vodafone, and Globe Telecom, among others.

The reason why Google has decided to direct its huge influence into this direction might stem from the company’s acquisition of Jibe, a RCS specialist, back in September 2015.

In addition to traditional texting (both SMS and MMS), RCS would provide its users with the ability to share high-quality photos and start group chats. In a similar vein, the chances that video calling will soon be available are high at this point.

However, the timing might not be the best for RCS to start rolling out, seeing the popularity gained by messaging apps such as Facebook Messenger and WhatsApp. It seems as if these apps have beaten RCS to the punch in becoming the go-to messaging platform.

Meanwhile, the GSMA hopes that Google’s involvement in this project will make its launch successful, setting RCS as the new standard. And seeing that Android is used on devices around the world, the program might still have a fighting chance to become prevalent.
Image Source: Phoneia

About John W Arthur

John is the head of our IT Security team and he writes about Security, IT news on The Next Digit. He was the Employee of the Year 2013 for his selfless support and efficiently setting up the whole security infrastructure. He also occasionally writes on "IT Sec Pro" Print Media of Sweden. All posts by John

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