When you use apps like iMessage and Whatsapp to send a message, the message goes through the internet to the app’s servers and then it is sent out to the recipient. The recipient must have the same app installed for them to get the message. In the case of SMS, you can send it to any phone. When you type in an SMS and hit send, the message is routed through the carrier provider and the recipient gets it. The recipient device does not require any 3rd party app to receive a message. RCS or Rich Communication Servies is the evolution of SMS. RCS, just like SMS, is built into cell towers. That means if you send RCS to a friend and if that friend doesn’t have a phone that supports it, the message will be simply delivered as an SMS. Here’s how to get RCS Messaging on Android.
Get RCS Messaging on Android
Follow the steps below;
Step 1: Open Google Play Store and search for Messages. Alternatively, you can follow this link.
Step 2: Tap on Install. While you’re waiting for the download to finish, scroll down and tap on Join Beta Program. Tap on Join.
Step 3: Search for Activity Launcher on Google Play Store and tap on Install.
Step 4: Close all apps and open Activity Launcher.
Step 5: Find Messages and tap on it.
Step 6: Select the option that says Set RCS Flags.
Step 7: Tap on ACS Url and select http://rcs-acs-prod-us.sandbox.google.com/ from the list of options.
Step 8: Hit Apply.
Step 9: No, go to Settings > App Manager (or Apps) and find Messages.
Step 10: Clear data and cache.
Step 11: Open Google Play Store and update Messages. Open the app after the update’s done.
Step 12: You will be prompted with a message that says “Messages just got better”. Tap on Agree.
Step 13: You’ll get another prompt that says “Let app always run in the background”. Tap on Allow.
Step 14: Wait for a few seconds for the message that says “Chat features are ready”. Tap on Got it.
This is it. You’re all set to use RCS or at least get a glimpse of it as it is still in its beta stage. Note that all the features may not work perfectly as it is still in beta. This is how Google aims to make SMS obsolete along with popular messaging platforms like What’s app. Google has already partnered with major carriers like AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile, and Verizon. The feature has already rolled out in the USA; if someone sends you a text message and both of your devices support RCS, it’ll turn into rich chat.