In a move announced by the GSMA this week, Google and the GSMA are working together for a text message makeover.
For over a decade, Short Message Service or SMS has been the way we text each other but, according to Google and the GSMA, things are about to change for Android users. This collaboration will work to make Rich Communications Services or RCS the standard on all Android devices and will create a universal profile based on the GSMA's RCS specifications and Google's Android RCS client. With consistent RCS implementation across the globe, "features such as group chat, high-res photo sharing, read receipts, and more, will now become part of the operator messaging experience, enhancing the experience of over 4 billion SMS users worldwide," explained the GSMA. "GSMA RCS advanced calling features will also be supported in the future by Google."
Google and the GMSA have been pushing RCS adoption for some time but this partnership may be the push needed to make RCS the standard. The GSMA has been looking to transition to RCS for almost a decade, promoting the service since 2008. "RCS continues to experience organic growth around the world, with 47 operators in 34 countries having launched services to date. However, this initiative will greatly simplify and accelerate adoption of the technology, and points to the future of how mobile users will communicate with one another. This is an incredibly positive development for the industry," said Alex Sinclair, Chief Technology Officer, GSMA. "Google's contributions will provide operators a new opportunity for a rich, consistent implementation across Android devices and offer a real step change in messaging experiences for consumers worldwide."
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