Google has announced the revitalization of its Rich Communications Services (RCS) standard for its SMS app. This open source standard, available since 2012, allows you to receive messages from all known instant messaging applications, and is currently available on almost all mobile devices equipped with the Google Android system.
Compared to instant messaging applications, the RCS standard provides several important advantages, such as interoperability; Where users can communicate with each other regardless of the type of RCS applications used, in addition to that the contacts remain stored on mobile devices, and are not uploaded to the servers of different companies to synchronize data. Among the clear advantages of the RCS standard over SMS is the end-to-end encryption function, which is still in the implementation stage at Google, in addition to the absence of a maximum text length.
The RCS standard also provides all known functions in other instant messaging applications, such as making phone calls with or without the video function, sending pictures, videos, voice messages and status information, such as “received messages” or “read messages”. The user can also transfer data via WLAN wireless network if available.
The user can activate the RCS standard in the Google Messages messaging application through the settings menu under the heading “Activate chat functions”. The user can also be greeted when opening the Messages application by showing a message that the RCS standard is active. In order for the user to be able to initiate a conversation via the RCS standard, the other party must also activate RCS, and if this is not the case, communications are made via SMS.