Here are the carriers that will support Google Chat from the get-go


Google recently announced a new, unified messaging platform called Chat. Pausing development on the text-based Allo and video-oriented Duo, Google has finally decided to focus on a universal Android messaging effort, a la iMessage.

Google Chat uses the RCS (Rich Communications Services) standard, and feature-wise it is very similar to messaging apps like Facebook Messanger, WhatsApp, and Viber, but it's actually built on top of SMS. RCS, if you're not familiar, is a new universal standard that is meant to supplant SMS, and it offers the same features that IP-based messaging protocols do (i.e. read receipts, file and image transfer, etc.), but relies minimally on mobile data. In fact, it should mostly be free and bundled with your data plan, instead of SMS, or cost a tiny fee, depending on the type of message.

The idea is that the RCS protocol is a carrier service, and as such, the carriers have the final say in what RCS-enabled apps like Google Chat will and won't be able to do. Many carriers from all over the globe have already committed to GSMA's Universal Profile, while others have developed their own, proprietary implementations. The good news here is that Google has Jibe—a cloud platform that allows for the effortless implementation of the standard—and is partnering left and right with OEMs and carriers to offer a native client for RCS, SMS, and MMS messaging. Google is even said to be negotiating RCS implementations with Apple, though there's no guarantee how this will pan out.

Currently, 55 carriers worldwide, 11 OEMs, and 2 OS providers have adopted the GSMA Universal Profile, but this doesn't mean that others won't be able to flip the switch later on or join in on the fun via Google Jibe.

Here's a list of all carriers, OEMs, and OS provides that currently support the GSMA Universal Profile for RCS:

Carriers


  • Advanced Info Service (AIS) - Thailand
  • Airtel - India
  • América Móvil - Mexico
  • AT&T - USA
  • Axiata - Malaysia
  • Beeline - Russia
  • Bell Mobility - Canada
  • China Mobile - China
  • China Telecom - China
  • China Unicom - China
  • Claro - Latin America
  • Deutsche Telekom - Germany
  • Etisalat - UAE
  • Globe Telecom - Philippines
  • Ice - Norway
  • Indosat Ooredoo - Indonesia
  • KDDI - Japan
  • KPN - Netherlands
  • M1 Limited - Singapore
  • MegaFon - Russia
  • Millicom - Latin America and Africa
  • MTN Group - South Africa
  • MTS - Russia
  • NTT Docomo - Japan
  • Optus - Australia
  • Orange - France
  • Personal - Argentina
  • Play - Poland
  • Reliance Jio - India
  • Rogers - Canada
  • Singtel - Singapore
  • Smart Communications - Philippines
  • Sprint - USA
  • StarHub - Singapore
  • Telcel - Mexico
  • Tele2 - Nordic countries
  • Telefónica - Spain
  • Telenor - Norway
  • Telia Company - Sweden
  • Telkomsel - Indonesia
  • Telstra - Australia
  • Telus - Canada
  • TIM - Italy
  • T-Mobile - USA
  • Turkcell - Turkey
  • Verizon - USA
  • VEON - Netherlands
  • Vodafone - UK

Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs)


  • Alcatel
  • ASUS
  • General Mobile
  • HTC
  • Lava Mobiles
  • Lenovo
  • LG
  • Huawei
  • Intex
  • Samsung
  • ZTE

OS providers


  • Google
  • Microsoft

With such a huge variety of Android phones out there, using RCS to deliver a unified messaging experience was perhaps the only feasible approach. The stock Android Messages app that most phones already have is a great starting point. RCS is universally supported and would allow for the usual chat shenanigans we are accustomed to, not to mention that it still works within the framework of the carriers, so if somebody on the receiving end doesn't have Google Chat, the message will simply fall back to regular SMS. But for all the great things RCS has to offer, there is one big drawback currently – it's not encrypted. In this day and age, this could prove to be yet another insurmountable hurdle for Google towards the goal to create a truly useful go-to messaging app for Android.

source: GSMA via AndroidCentral

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20 Comments

1. ullokey

Posts: 179; Member since: Jul 28, 2015

uses RCS... yaay to battery drain

4. rdgprime

Posts: 8; Member since: May 08, 2016

True... IDK why RCS drains so much battery, it should use SMS like signaling to check for new messages, instead of checking for them all the time...

12. applesnapple93

Posts: 312; Member since: Jan 06, 2016

Google chat already existed for a while as advanced messages. So to say these carriers will support them "from the get go" is not accurate at all. Verizon and AT&T have not set dates so the article title is already false. They also said they would support RCS but did not commit the GSMA universal profile.

2. haikallp

Posts: 319; Member since: Feb 10, 2012

Yes. Singapore's M1 will support it Great news.

3. Rager722 unregistered

What will this mean for messaging on Android? Will we be able to see when someone is responding or have seen a message similar to iMessage? Also, will we be able to send HD video and clear photos to others? Will that mean that the days of iMessage dominating is over? Finally..

17. Carlitos

Posts: 671; Member since: Oct 23, 2011

Yes. Yes. Yes. And possibly yes.

5. antoni

Posts: 5; Member since: Mar 19, 2018

Android Messages = fail. Google Talk = fail. Hangouts = fail. Google Allo = fail. Google Duo = Fail. Google Chat = [Anybody care to put their money on this?]

6. MartyK

Posts: 1043; Member since: Apr 11, 2012

I am, Google is ready to move forward..

8. Doakie

Posts: 2478; Member since: May 06, 2009

I have no idea why they gave up on Hangouts when it had SMS in it. It already seemed to be full featured enough. All my friends use Hangouts to chat back and forth. As ones of us left to iPhones then came back, they were still able to keep in contact the whole time. Illogical.

10. bucknassty

Posts: 1350; Member since: Mar 24, 2017

the funny thing is... RCS has been around for awhile... its the carriers who do not care to enrich the user experience. Just like carriers alter certain software updates for android and people constantly complain about slow updates. And with android being 'open-source' google can't just force a feature on the OS it has to do it through google services, but why they haven't just continued to improve something good (i.e. hangouts, dumb name by the way) I have no clue. Hangouts use to fall back to sms before google castrated it.

7. path45th

Posts: 405; Member since: Sep 11, 2016

There's no need to install it. I already have what I need.. iMessages

11. Foxgabanna

Posts: 607; Member since: Sep 11, 2016

Why did we have to wait so long for this to happen? iPhones have had imessage for years and i doubt this will be nearly as good as that. **Not an iphone User** Just a disapoiinted android dude.

13. LoveHater

Posts: 234; Member since: Oct 09, 2013

where is "" J-I-O """

16. madnav

Posts: 9; Member since: Jun 06, 2016

Reliance JIO it is called; it is there.

14. savagx

Posts: 33; Member since: Sep 15, 2015

it's cool but it's not encrypted so not much future potenital kinda bad move

15. madnav

Posts: 9; Member since: Jun 06, 2016

Suggestion: Sort carriers list in "Country - Carrier" format to make it easier for readers to focus on information relevant to them.

18. KingSam

Posts: 1466; Member since: Mar 13, 2016

None of my countries carriers because both are trash.

19. Blazers

Posts: 750; Member since: Dec 05, 2011

So I see Samsung is on board. Hopefully they make their own version as usual, so it can be themed.

20. svknet

Posts: 30; Member since: Mar 13, 2017

Would Microsoft app "SMS Organizer" (available in India) support RCS?

* Some comments have been hidden, because they don't meet the discussions rules.

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