To say the rollout of Rich Communication Services (RCS) has been a slog is one of the biggest understatements of the decade. Google bit the bullet and started to roll out RCS on its own with the promise of widespread availability by the end 2019. This week, Google is delivering on that promise by extending RCS to US Android devices via a Carrier Services update.
Multiple users on the Universal Profile, T-Mobile, and Sprint subreddits have confirmed RCS has been enabled on a variety of devices, including Google Pixels, Samsung Galaxies, various OnePlus handsets, and Motorola phones after installing the latest version of Carrier Services. If you haven’t grabbed the update yet, you can download it from the Play Store or at APK Mirror. After that, you should receive a popup asking you to agree to use RCS. If not, 9to5Google notes that you may also need the latest Google Messages update before RCS can be enabled.
Photo by ThePix13 on Reddit
Although Google has largely taken the RCS expansion into its own hands, the four major US carriers aren’t standing idle. In October, AT&T, Verizon, T-Mobile, and Sprint announced a joint venture to build a cross-carrier RCS solution that wouldn’t be based on Google Jibe, but it does promise to be compatible with other RCS Universal Profile implementations. If you have more questions about RCS, you can learn about what the service is, how it’s secured, and a ton more in our comprehensive writeup here.