Google is bringing SMS successor RCS to the Netherlands and Belgium: this is how it works

Good news for those who are eagerly awaiting RCS messaging. Google is now making the new service available worldwide. The introduction took years.

Google releases RCS worldwide

RCS is seen as the new messaging standard, where it should be the successor to SMS. Before that happens, there are still a few things to be done, but the start is there. Google has just announced that the service is now available worldwide for all Android users.

The abbreviation RCS stands for Rich Communication Services. It has been developed together with providers from all over the world and must therefore follow up on SMS in the long term. RCS is very similar to messages as we now send them via WhatsApp. Sending an image via an MMS, who still does that? With RCS you can not only send texts or photos, but also other files. It is also possible to have group conversations at RCS. You can also respond with stickers.

Because providers all over the world were not all eager to support RCS, Google has chosen to support this service worldwide itself. This means that the service can now be used in the Netherlands and Belgium. You need the Google Messages app for this.

Thanks to RCS you can also see whether the other has seen your message and whether the other is typing. However, you can turn off these two things if you don’t want the other to see this. Of course, the well-known emojis are also present in the application.

Google Messages RCS

Using RCS

If you want to use RCS, not only must your device support this, but also that of the receiver. When opening Google Messages, you will now see the message that Messages has gotten better. Then tap the three dots and choose ‘Chat functions’. You then need to verify your phone number, which can take a while. With me it has taken forever. If you want to send a message you will see ‘chat’. If you still see ‘SMS’, it is not yet compatible.

Google has also indicated that it wants to do more about privacy. SMS messages have no form of encryption, which makes them easy to intercept in theory. Starting next month, Google will test end-to-end encryption with beta users for RCS.

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