The RCS standard (Rich Communication Services) becomes the successor of SMS, the technology that almost nobody uses since WhatsApp became popular. Google has spent years trying to promote these services enriched communication Android, and today we woke up to the news that the media has finally come to at least one important application: Google Messenger.
This new generation of messaging offers enhanced features that go beyond simple text messages and voice calls. Consumers could chat instantaneously, share files across different devices and networks, and stream video. That is, they do things like iMessage, WhatsApp and Telegram, but directly through your operator and not a third party app.
The evolution of prehistoric SMS and MMS
The SMS protocol was created long before telephony operators even thought of offering data over the Internet. It is so outdated that almost nobody uses it, all modern messaging applications have far exceeded it and that is where the RCS standard comes into action. But why has it taken so long?
The problem: operator will need your support; your device supports it and has an application installed that supports it. The RCS has tried to take off in several areas but has not succeeded. Each operator went on their own implementing their own profile causing compatibility problems between one application and another, one device and another and one operator and another.
Google came to the rescue and offered the solution with a universal profile: Jibe. It will work with any operator like the current SMS and MMS, and at the same time, each operator manages its own service and can charge for it. RCS messages will never go through Google’s servers, only those of our operator.
If I already have WhatsApp so I want this?
Although it is a very valid argument, the fact that there are many messaging platforms already established that make everything offered by the RCS and more standard, does not mean that this is completely useless and unnecessary.
Facebook Messenger, Hangouts, Allo, WhatsApp, Telegram, etc. all are excellent choices and innovate at a much faster than operators step, if anything is clear over time that has taken them to begin to realize the RCS, but the latter has a great advantage: it is tied to your phone number and you do not need to install anything or create an account to use it.
So far, the RCS standard is only implemented in Android and few operators support it, are just beginning to try it in the United States as a free service. However, the Google SMS application already includes it; it is a big step forward. Google is already associated with many carriers and manufacturers to offer a customer that is interoperable across any platform.
Google Messenger could arrive in the future not too far away from Windows or iOS, and if the rest of the GSMA operators activate the support, the standard might end up taking off. However, if operators want to compete with WhatsApp or iMessage cannot start charging from the beginning, no one will prefer them to something completely free and probably better.
The RCS exists for a simple reason: operators get nothing besides profit data you consume every time you use apps like WhatsApp, it is not surprising that want to change this. But as each company seeks its own benefit, it has taken them years to find a neutral point, so Google has ended up offering the best solution.
You may already be a little late to triumph and users take over the solutions to those already adjusted, but you cannot underestimate the power of simplicity of using only your phone number to communicate. Be that as it may, it is an improvement to a protocol that is increasingly felt more and more inconsistent in relation to modern technologies.