The iPhone will be gaining RCS (Rich Communication Services) support starting next year, as Apple has confirmed to 9to5Mac. The messaging standard, currently adopted by Android phones and carriers nationwide, will allow for a more cohesive communication experience between iPhones and Android devices.
Also: iMessage on Android is happening, thanks to Nothing
Right now, communicating with a non-iPhone user through iMessage sees several feature limitations, including the lack of typing indicators, disorientated group chats, and image- and video-sending at a lower resolution. RCS alleviates those pain points and, by leveraging both cellular and Wi-Fi services, introduces other user benefits. These include location-sharing and read receipts between iPhones and Androids.
In a statement to 9to5Mac, Apple says “Later next year, we will be adding support for RCS Universal Profile, the standard as currently published by the GSM Association. We believe RCS Universal Profile will offer a better interoperability experience when compared to SMS or MMS. This will work alongside iMessage, which will continue to be the best and most secure messaging experience for Apple users.”
Also: Google urges EU regulators to make Apple open up iMessage
This comes at a time when companies like Google, Samsung, and, just this week, Nothing, continue to pressure the Cupertino tech giant to make the switch in order to foster better interoperability and feature parity across different operating systems and products.
More fittingly, the announcement comes on the deadline day for appeals to the EU’s Digital Markets Act (DMA), to which Google had previously signed a letter urging for the regulation of iMessage.
A Google spokesperson has responded to the news with the following: “Everyone deserves to communicate with each other in ways that are modern and secure, no matter what phone they have. That’s why we have worked closely with the mobile industry to accelerate the adoption of RCS, and we’re happy to see Apple take their first step today by coming on board to embrace RCS. We welcome Apple’s participation in our ongoing work with GSMA to evolve RCS and make messaging more equitable and secure, and look forward to working with…