Google’s ninth attempt at a messaging service will be based on RCS

RCS will be something like Google’s ninth instant messaging platform, after Google Talk, Google Voice, Google Buzz, Google+ Messenger, Hangouts, Spaces, Allo, and Hangouts Chat.

This company is really becoming a joke…

Let’s see what messaging app they’ll introduce next year :joy:

1 Like

What will the 10th version be :wink:

RCS is a much-needed upgrade to a very old and out of date messaging system. It’s been on the cards for quite a while now but the carriers are dragging their feet. The intention was that carriers would update their systems to support RCS but, as we’re still waiting, Google has decided to jump in and sort it out.

Not a bad move in my book!


I would agree - if I had any confidence that Google would actually stick with it. As it stands I suspect that Google RCS will be shut down by 2021 at the latest becuae Google wants to use the next great messaging app.

The other issue is that with WhatsApp etc noone is gonna use it anyway. I have unlimited texts and send less than one month on average. That’s not cuz of limited features but just cuz I’m in WhatsApp and viber all the time anyway.

And that isn’t going to change - especially while RCS remains android only.

The other problem is that text messages are so full of spam. Pretty much the only texts I receive are spam. The last thing I want is for dominoes to send me photo or even video spam, that’s not only going to be a annoying but also burning through my data allowance…


I’m still amazed that people send MMS and happy to pay for it, instead of whatsapp or other alternatives. EE put the cost up for MMS to 65p yesterday. Why would anyone pay this?


Doesn’t surprise me lol about mms going up.

I can see where you’re coming from with this comment but I don’t think based on this alone Google can be classed as a joke company.

After all most of world is still using Google search.

I read somewhere Google wanted network operators to implement RCS but it was so slow and patchy that now they have decided to do it themselves.

Edit: Found the article I read -

1 Like

Oh, don’t get me wrong: I use Google a lot, incl Gmail, android, search, drive, docs, maps, etc. And really love many of their products.

I should’ve been more specific: Google’s approach to messaging is becoming a joke. (Iiterally made that joke in the next sentence, by the way :wink: )

(also: hyperbole…)

A lot of people don’t realise that MMS is enabled on the iPhone by default and unless you turn it off, and the recipient uses iMessage then even normal texts can go by MMS.

Untill a few weeks ago my dad had a Lumia windows phone, it would send messages via MMS even if they where just short lines of text (I did tell him to stop texting me pictures).

Each time Apple try and remove MMS there is outrage and it ends up being put back in.

I think EE’s pricing is reflrective of the fact that they realise most people don’t use it intentionally but untill MMS is phased out people will continue to use it unless they are shown a “better” way

RCS needs end to end encryption by default and I’ll consider it.

Until then it can jump on the pile of garbage protocols!


I suspect that carriers have been uninterested in RCS because they have always enjoyed the charging model for SMS/MMS - there are still plenty of people who don’t have bundled ‘limitless’ texts.

Mobile messaging has moved on though. Sadly into propriety services, be that iMessage, BBM (RIP) or WhatsApp.

WhatsApp is a great service and being platform agnostic has enabled them to eat market share - I just wish it wasn’t owned by that pool of rancidity we know as Facebook.

Switching to Telegram or Viber just isn’t a viable option because there is little point being in a chat on your own.

RCS is encrypted in transport but does not feature end-to-end encryption. Google says it will delete your messages on delivery - but it’s federated so you cant really guarantee that your messages won’t touch your carrier’s own implementation (when/if they get round to it).

It would be pretty trivial for a future government to mandate that UK-based carriers store massages that are sent via their servers for a period of a couple of years. They already do this in many areas.

So, I’m all for RCS - I just don’t see it being the WhatsApp killer.


Interestingly enough most of my contacts are actually on viber. Only a small number of my friends prefer WhatsApp…

I’ve been encouraging all of my contacts to switch to Signal. They built the E2EE that WhatsApp uses but it’s a fully private service. Unlike WhatsApp/Facebook, no logging of meta data such as people you’ve contacted, dates, times, etc. And no prospect of the introduction of adverts into the app!


I use imessage, WhatsApp, Viber, Telegram and Signal depending who uses them I have also used Tango.

I prefer Threema as it doesn’t require any identifiable info at all and has an added bonus that you can only verify contacts as 100% trusted, in person using a QR code.

The problem I think for most people is that Threema is not free. Also no matter what people think about privacy they just want something that works and whichever way you look at it, dumping your entire address book into an app and letting it do the match achieves that

1 Like

While Whatsapp has a large user base I’m countries such as the UK that’s not the case in the US or Scandinavia. There most people use iMessage and if they don’t have an iPhone they use regular texts. Some use Facebook Messenger.

Think the universality of WhatsApp (ie you can’t get imessage on Android) plus group chatting (loved by teenagers when it was pioneered by Blackberry and you can’t do it with SMS) has made WhatsApp the dominant force.

WhatsApp had already got a major foothold here before Facebook started to put more effort into it’s messenger. Suppose that’s why they saw the game was up and just bought WhatsApp.

Zevvle gives you control over MMS

Switching it off was the first thing I did.

I’m not convinced this will be as privacy respecting as they vaguely attempt to suggest. There last attempt (allo) which was actually a decently built app did have cloud services build in that analysed your messages, these weren’t local to the device or as far as i’m aware anonymised.

Considering googles business is primarily data mining, im not sure what to expect from this. And im assuming apps would have to support googles system, or support a carrier system to work. So if your carrier doesn’t support RCS you have to use google messages (no doubt this is the app they’ll use)

1 Like

I enabled ‘chat’ in my Google messages app around a month ago.
Only in the last couple of days have I sent a message to somebody else who has had this feature switched on.

This is only going to be useful if they actually switch it on by default, á la iMessage. Waiting for people to accidentally switch on a mode that they know nothing about is a road that leads only to another failure for Google.

1 Like