The blue versus green bubble debate may finally be coming to an end. Apple says the iPhone will add support for RCS messaging, the messaging standard used by most Android phones, in 2024, according to a report from 9to5Mac.
“Later next year, we will add support for the RCS Universal Profile, the standard currently published by the GSM Association,” an Apple spokesperson said. 9to5Mac. “We believe RCS Universal Profile will provide a better interoperability experience compared to SMS or MMS. It will work with iMessage, which will continue to be the best and most secure messaging experience for Apple users.
iPhone adopting RCS could enable support for read receipts, typing indicators, high-resolution images and videos, etc., when sending texts between iPhone and Android devices, as noted 9to5Mac. Apple tells the outlet that it will also allow users to share locations in text threads.
We still don’t know what form this new RCS messaging will take, but 9to5Mac says “this is not Apple opens iMessage to other platforms” (emphasis mine). RCS will instead replace SMS and MMS “which exist separately from iMessage when available.” Apple did not immediately respond The edgerequest for comment.
The change likely comes in response to regulatory pressure from the European Union’s Digital Markets Act (DMA), a rule that requires large companies, like Apple, to make their services interoperable with other platforms. In September, the European Commission opened an investigation into iMessage to determine whether it should be considered a “core platform service.” However, Apple reportedly claimed that iMessage was not popular enough in Europe for the rules to apply, and was considering an appeal against government regulation of its App Store.
Apple may not be doing this of its own volition, but the addition of RCS is a more than welcome change, especially for all of us who have had to deal with receiving poor quality videos sent from from iPhones to Androids (and vice versa). , as well as a patchwork of other missing features that make it less appealing for cross-device texting.
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