Calls for Apple to support RCS in iOS

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There has been something of a social media storm over the last few days surrounding RCS support, or rather lack of it from Apple. Hiroshi Lockheimer, a SVP at Google was calling out bullies in the 'playground', wherein iPhone-owning teenagers were shaming Android-owning friends because of the colour of their messaging. So essentially iMessage versus vanilla SMS. But Hiroshi is calling for Apple to support RCS (Rich Communication Services), i.e. iOS could support all the standard messaging features and multimedia support that is more or less standard across the telecomms world in 2022. Which may not change the colour of messages on iPhones, but it would let Android users join in most of the rich feature set currently centred on iMessage. Baby unification steps?

From Hiroshi's Twitter thread:

Tons of great discussion following my tweet over the weekend. Thank you for that. I wanted to follow up with some thoughts and clarifications.
We’re not asking Apple to make iMessage available on Android. We’re asking Apple to support the industry standard for modern messaging (RCS) in iMessage, just as they support the older SMS / MMS standards.

Why is this important? Phone number-based messaging is the fallback that we all know will work. If you want to reach someone and you don’t know whether they use app x y or z, you have high confidence that sending them a text (SMS) will work. That’s because it’s a standard and supported by essentially all mobile devices. That’s probably why Apple supported SMS to begin with.

SMS has evolved, and it’s better. You can see read receipts, typing indicators, better groups, secure 1:1 messages (groups coming soon) etc. That new standard is called RCS, and it’s available now. Supporting RCS would improve the experience for both iOS and Android users alike. That’s right, RCS will also improve the experience and privacy for iOS users.

By not incorporating RCS, Apple is holding back the industry and holding back the user experience for not only Android users but also their own customers.

If you're a little confused at this point then he does link also to a Max Weinbach Tiktok video (if the embed doesn't work in your country then click through and watch on the web):

@maxwellweinbach Texting green bubbles sucks because of apple, not because of your android friend #iphone #android #samsung ♬ original sound - Maxwell Weinbach

Source / Credit: Twitter