Google is attempting to make messaging between iPhone and Android phones a little bit simpler, but the blue and green bubble texting split won’t be closing any time soon. According to a statement released by Google on Thursday, the Messages app will soon feature iPhone message responses in text threads.
It’s one of a number of new features Google will be adding to its Messages app in the coming weeks in an effort to make messaging more accessible to all users, regardless of the phone they use.
For Android users who have friends who own iPhones, the better support for responses, which Apple calls Tapback, will probably be a huge thing. iPhone users may tap and hold on a block of text to reply with an emoji to a text message. On an Android phone, however, the emoji is now replaced by a message that describes the response (e.g., “liked,” “loved,” etc.). You’ll soon see the emoji reaction on the relevant message thanks to this update, which will modify that. The function is still in beta, but as part of Google’s Messages upgrade, it will become more widely available.
In Google’s blog post unveiling the improvements, Jan Jedrzejowicz, a group product manager for Google’s Messages and Phone app, stated that “when users with Android phones and iPhones contact one other, not everything works the way it should.”
RCS, a more recent texting standard that will allow current messaging capabilities to function on all phones that support it, is something Google has been pushing more phone manufacturers and carriers to adopt. In its blog post on Thursday, the firm pressed for RCS compatibility once more, citing SMS and MMS as two important factors in why communication between Android smartphones and iPhones isn’t always as seamless as it might be.
Google made many attempts to create a bespoke messaging software before deciding to support the RCS standard and invest in its Messages app. Allo, Hangouts, Voice, and a few variations of Google Chat are examples of previous initiatives that are either being discontinued or repurposed. In Google’s Messages app, the RCS-powered capabilities are also referred to as Chat. In order to compete with Apple, which has long provided a unified messaging platform for Apple devices that combines many capabilities available in the RCS standard, Google has spent the previous several years investing in its default messaging app.
Google, however, has plans beyond simply supporting iPhone responses. Additionally, it aims to make it simpler to transfer films in their entirety from within the Messages app. Instead of sending a compressed version of the movie over SMS, you will be able to share a Google Photos link to a full quality video within a conversation.
Much if sharing multiple images or videos from Google Photos is already simple, the new integration should make it even easier from within the Messages app.
Additionally, Messages is gaining a few organising features that resemble Gmail and other email inboxes. An organised inbox with tabs for Personal and Business communications is one of these.
In order to prevent you from forgetting to respond to a chat thread, the app will also remind you to do so. If the date is in your Contacts app, you’ll also get birthday reminders.
When the pre-existing emoji aren’t precisely what you need, you may create your own adaptations with Gboard’s Emoji Kitchen. For instance, you may replace the “heart eyes” on an emoji face with pretzel eyes or add decorations to another emoji, like a food sign.
The RCS texting standard, which is now supported by both Google and carriers like Verizon, gives Android phones access to features like encrypted messaging, typing indications, read receipts, better photo sharing, and more. In the future, it could replace the dated SMS and MMS communication standards.
Despite having more limited capabilities than RCS, SMS and MMS are compatible with all phones, including flip phones and iPhones. When it comes to adopting RCS, Apple is a notable anomaly since it prioritises its own texting capabilities for its iMessage platform. The most recent changes from Google seem to support the company’s goals of improving its Messages programme to compete more effectively with Apple’s iMessage and urging Apple to switch to the RCS standard as an SMS successor.
The Messages update was part of a wider Google and Android feature release on Thursday morning, which also included the addition of Portrait Blur to Google Photos, changes to Google TV, and the support for parking payments via Google Assistant.
READ MORE HERE:
The Google to cut marketing budgets for second half of year, report says