Grab the new Google Messenger here; RCS support coming soon?

Google Messenger ver. 2.0 is now out in the wild with a brand new Pixel-style round icon and a redesigned UI. The updated build of the app is compatible with all devices running Android 4.4 KitKat and up, and you can download the APK here, even if the update hasn't rolled out to you yet via the Google Play Store.

Note: This is a stable release of Google Messenger that installs over your current version of the app

Google Messenger 2.0 sports the new circular app icon from Pixel Launcher, a redesigned notification bar icon, and an altered color palette that is in line with the new version of Google Phone. On the in-app UI front, the “New message” screen has been rearranged a bit, doing away with the “Frequent” and “All contacts” tabs, in favor of a more unified look. Your most frequent contacts now displayed in two rows at the top, while the full contacts list below has become a bit denser, with smaller photo for each entry.

Conversations have also been “roundified”, with message bubbles now sporting noticeably smoother corners, and look more compact overall, mainly due to minimized padding and profile icons not appearing next to every message, but only at the beginning of message threads, similarly to Facebook Messenger and iMessage. The “Send” button in the text box now has an additional caption under the paper plane icon, reading “SMS” or “MMS”, depending on the type of message you're sending.

Interestingly enough, there is a new service called “JibeService” running alongside the Google Messenger 2.0. Although this doesn't confirm anything at this point, it may be an indicator that Google is looking to include support for Rich Communication Services (RCS) in the app. RCS has the potential to become the next standard for texting services, bringing features such as video calls, group chats, sharing of media content, and all the bells and whistles typically associated with instant messengers, across many different platforms supporting the standard. Furthermore, if the recipient of an RCS message is not using a supported platform, the message could be reverted to a standard SMS, making the protocol viable, albeit in its most basic form, on any platform with support for SMS. Unfortunately, none of this functionality is available in Google Messenger as of now, but it is a clear indication as to where things are headed. One has to wonder, however, what Google's future plans hold for Allo, if the company is looking to implement RCS into its default texting app.



1. applesnapple93

Posts: 335; Member since: Jan 06, 2016

this is why the partnered with verizon. to make RCS standard.

2. Babadook

Posts: 230; Member since: May 24, 2016

Whoa what is this RCS? Why isn't this the norm now! SMS is so bloody limited!

3. Arthurhkt

Posts: 727; Member since: Apr 19, 2012

I am waiting for the stock Clock UI redesign

4. andriodfanboy1

Posts: 169; Member since: Jul 22, 2014

I think rcs is like u can send pics vdo etc via typical sms without data or wifi and i have used such an app but it requires both sender and recipient to have same app when u try to send pics through this it will simply show you how many texts mesgs will be used like in my country 1000 words are equal to 1 full mesg,and a pic typical takes below 10 mesgs

5. VZWuser76

Posts: 4974; Member since: Mar 04, 2010

How do you send that stuff without mobile data or WiFi? The only other options are BT and NFC, and those are dependent on proximity.

7. Junito

Posts: 145; Member since: Feb 12, 2012

You have a point there, I think is an oversight. For example, WhatsApp, you have to have either data or WiFi toggled.

6. Junito

Posts: 145; Member since: Feb 12, 2012

But is it not true, in order for RCS to work, it has to have support in both ends? I'm sure Messenger will be the bridge.

8. VZWuser76

Posts: 4974; Member since: Mar 04, 2010

That's how all of these apps work. With iMessage, if you don't have it on one end, it simply sends an SMS IIRC, but you never get the full features if it isn't on both ends. And really, that makes sense. It's no different than sending out an HDTV signal to an old CRT TV. At the very least you need a set top box to down convert it, but regardless, you're not seeing the full benefit of HDTV on an older TV meant to use analog signals.

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