Apple Should Adopt the RCS Texting Standard
Apple is resisting RCS despite inefficient cross-platform functionality.
There’s an ongoing battle over who controls your smartphone’s text messages.
At the center of the fight is RCS—or Rich Communication Services, a protocol that replaces SMS and is more feature-rich than its predecessor. Google is a big proponent of RCS and has adopted the protocol in their Messages app on Andriod. Carriers have signed on too. Verizon, AT&T, and T-Mobile have all backed RCS.
But Apple is the big holdout, resisting RCS to focus on its own iMessage service, which is only available for iPhone users. While iMessage works great for iPhone-to-iPhone users, the service doesn’t play well with Android devices. This is because Apple defaults to SMS when users message non-iPhone devices, which also turns the iPhone’s chat bubbles green. The color change signals that the person you’re messaging is not on iMessage and that certain features, like high resolution photos and videos, will not work.