Have you ever wondered how you have stopped recharging your mobile number with SMS packs within a span of around six years? Or that you are now increasingly dependent on other messaging apps like WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger or iMessage? We have surrendered to the quick convenience of including emoticons even in a one-word text, and we are obsessed with knowing when our message is delivered to the recipient and when they read it. Unlike online messaging platforms that we can use on a WiFi setup, SMS services are entirely reliant on a network signal in our phones. And the ability to write long messages on social media messaging apps makes us not want to limit ourselves to the 160-characters of the SMS.
What is RCS Messaging?
The short-messaging bandwagon that began in 1982 would have eventually started to turn obsolete, and the SMS services had failed to evolve with time. But yet, as they say, old habits die hard. Statistics show that, on average, the world sends over 18.7 billion text messages in a day! And to make SMS a competitive element of messaging in the tech market, the cell phone industry, messaging apps, and smartphone companies have come up with a dynamic modification to the SMS called Rich Communication System (RCS). But what really is RCS?
RCS Messaging: Understanding the Tech-Revolution
Now RCS messaging is an upgrade to our old-school SMS messaging, infused with rich features that provide a user interface similar to other leading messaging apps like WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, Telegram, Viber, and WeChat. The RCS messaging system emerges as an engaging medium of text messaging in the competitive market that caters to nearly 4 billion users worldwide. It allows one to exchange graphics, audios and videos, make video calls and even receive read receipts– all to provide you with a texting experience as rich as its competitors. At MTalkz, we believe that RCS can serve as a next-gen communication protocol that enhances our messaging experience with rich features like branding, media and analytics. So if you use RCS to message a friend or use it to promote your business online, it will be a revolutionizing experience that changes the way we communicate.
Google’s Revolutionising RCS: Chat Messaging
The Rich Communication System (2007) was designed by the GSM Association in the first place as a protocol that would replace SMS, but it has witnessed snail-slow progress ever since. After a decade, Google announced that it had been working on advancing RCS with leading cell phone manufacturers to fasten its pace as a protocol. The protocol that they then delivered was Chat– a user-friendly Android messaging application that has evolved to appear like all other leading messaging systems. Google has continually improved its work by adding more features, improving communication profiles and allowing users to share graphic content as well. The latest addition to it is of course stickers and GIFs (but the debate withstands even today- should you call it jif or gif?).
However, Chat is supported only on Android and Samsung messaging apps. While it may seem a bit restrictive for non-Android users today, Chat may develop a more exhaustive protocol sometime in future. For now, Chat can only be used under a precise term of frame: where you must have an android to install it from your PlayStore. Your carrier should also support the RCS messaging protocol. And more importantly (and similar to iMessage), the person you send the Chat message to should also have it installed in their android device, otherwise the texts will be reverted as SMS only.
The Rich Communication Services is the future of the old SMS bulking that we have enjoyed up till the last decade, but RCS still requires ample modifications to sustain itself in the messaging business. It lacks the security of end to end encryption that other apps like WhatsApp provide, but Google is in talks for working on encryption in beta form. It also does not operate on devices like laptops, computers or iPads which don’t have a phone number and SIM card.
At Mtalkz, we engage in business ideas and creative thinking to come up with new and innovative creations that will help us widen the scope of RCS. We are really excited about providing efficient technologies that will enhance B2C interface and communication.