On this page

Text Messaging (SMS)

What is RCS Messaging on Android? How to Turn on RCS on Google Messages?

Published by
Sriranjani Aravindan
October 8, 2023

According to a recent Juniper Research article, there will be 3.8 billion RCS (Rich Communication Services) members worldwide by 2026, making up 40% of all mobile subscribers worldwide, up from 1.2 billion in 2022. Rich media messaging over operator networks is made possible via the RCS protocol, which also offers advanced business messaging services like chatbots and payments.

RCS messaging offers an enhanced messaging experience by enabling a wide range of features beyond traditional SMS. With RCS text messages, you can enjoy features like read receipts, typing indicators, high-resolution media sharing, group chats, and more. It's like taking your messaging to the next level, making conversations more engaging, expressive, and efficient.

To turn on RCS messaging on your Android device, you need to use Google Messages as your default messaging app. Google Messages supports RCS and seamlessly integrates its features into the app. In this blog, we will delve into the world of RCS messaging, exploring its features, and benefits, and how to enable it on Google Messages, the default messaging app for Android. 

We will guide you through the process of enabling RCS on Google Messages, step by step, so you can start experiencing the benefits of this advanced messaging platform. Get ready to unlock a world of richer and more interactive conversations with Google RCS messaging!

What Is RCS?

RCS Messaging - What is RCS?

Rich Communication Services serves as a protocol between both mobile operators and phones. The GSM Association (GSMA), the industry trade organization that represents mobile carriers globally, acquired RCS in 2008 after it was originally established in 2007. In order to facilitate the implementation of RCS text messages on devices, any mobile carriers, phone makers, and software suppliers can utilize the Universal Profile, which the GSMA approved in 2016. Similar to WhatsApp, RCS messaging allows for live conversation with the ability to support multimedia, all while using the data network.

RCS communications offers multimedia material including photographs, videos, and audio messages in contrast to SMS, which is restricted to plain text and allows for only a certain number of characters. Additionally, it offers real-time texting with read receipts, which inform you when your message has been received by the receiver, and indicators that display when someone is typing. You can make use of these capabilities even if the receiver doesn't have RCS enabled since RCS messaging enables a smooth transition between SMS and web messaging.

RCS Messaing: App0 CTA

Enhance Ecommerce Customer Service With Text Messaging

App0 offers a flexible no-code/low-code platform to enable business owners to launch AI agents faster & at scale. Customer experience for retail & Ecommerce powered by AI messaging. Schedule a demo to learn how AI can revolutionise customer service & loyalty.

Explore App0

RCS vs. SMS: What’s the Difference?

RCS Texting: What is the difference between SMS and RCS messaging? | Esendex UK

RCS (Rich Communication Services) and SMS (Short Message Service) represent distinct realms of mobile messaging, each with its unique features. Here's a breakdown of the key differences between them:

1. Plain Text Messages:

SMS: Yes

RCS: Yes

2. Multimedia Content:


RCS: Yes (supports photos, videos, and audio)

3. Typing Indicators:


RCS: Yes

4. Read Receipts:


RCS: Yes

5. Group Chats:

SMS: Limited

RCS: Yes

6. File Size Limitations:

SMS: Yes (160 characters)

RCS: No (varies based on carrier settings)

7. Internet Connection:

SMS: Not required

RCS: Required

8. Platform Availability:

SMS: Widely available

RCS: Android-only

While SMS is straightforward with text-only communication, RCS text messages elevates the experience with multimedia support, read receipts, and advanced features. Notably, RCS demands an internet connection and is currently exclusive to Android. As technology giants like Google champion RCS, the messaging landscape continues to evolve, offering users a richer and more interactive communication experience.

What Does RCS Messaging Do?

RCS Messaging: What is RCS Messaging?

Users may send rich, verified communications with RCS Messaging, giving it a considerable edge over SMS. This development increases the variety of information that may be transmitted between users by enabling the insertion of multimedia material such as images, videos, and audio messages within messages.

RCS Messaging allows integrated video calls within the messaging app, displacing the requirement for third-party software, in addition to multimedia features. The entire texting experience is improved with features like read receipts and typing indications as well as support for group communications. Additionally, RCS communications surpass the 160 character restriction imposed by SMS, enabling longer and more expressive dialogues.

Businesses may take advantage of RCS Messaging's advantages by using the platform to transmit boarding passes, parcel delivery notifications, and alerts about credit card theft, among other things. Android phones lacked these capabilities in a default messaging programme, although these functions have been included in messaging apps like Apple iMessage, WhatsApp, and Facebook Messenger. Uncertainty surrounds the new CCMIs potential function in the US and its compatibility with the Google app, but many users will value having a single app for all of their messaging requirements.

Is RCS Messaging Secure?

Client-to-server encryption is used by RCS communications to prioritize security when transferring data between users. The protection of messages during transit is ensured by this encryption. The protocol also includes safeguards against spam messages ever getting to your device.

Companies must go through a brand authentication procedure in order to send messages using RCS, which lowers the possibility of unwanted messaging. The sender's name, rather than just a cell phone number, will be shown when you receive RCS text messages from businesses, providing more security than SMS.

End-to-end encryption is now used in Google Messages' Chat function, demonstrating Google's dedication to security. The code for this encryption was found in an unreleased version, but it wasn't until November 2020 that it was formally published in beta. End-to-end encryption is now a feature of Chat in Google Messages as of June 2021. Simply check for the lock icon next to the send arrow in the messaging app to see if a message is encrypted. Your communications are kept private and secure thanks to this extra degree of protection.

RCS Textng: App0 CTA
Power Text Messaging Using AI

Move beyond traditional chatbots for customer engagement. Choose App0 to launch AI agents that guide customers from start to finish via text messaging, to fully execute the tasks autonomously.

See a Demo

Does Your Phone Support RCS?

Many businesses, including operators, producers, and software developers, have endorsed RCS Messaging, but Google stands out as the main proponent. With the intention of integrating RCS texting into all Android phones, Google has been actively encouraging its use. Along with SMS and MMS, Google is rolling out the RCS functionality, referred to as "chat," within the current Android Messages app.

The success and rate of RCS messaging adoption depend on cell carriers, despite the fact that the Android Messages app is widely accessible on Android phones through Google Play. There are now several RCS protocol variants, which leads to a lack of network support for phones that use RCS. Participating with the GSM Association's Universal Interoperability Testbed, Google has tackled several interoperability difficulties.

An RCS communication will be transmitted as a standard text message to a recipient whose phone or mobile network does not support it. To overcome this restriction, nevertheless, work is being done. For instance, to ensure interoperability between their own RCS apps, notably Android Messages and Samsung Messages, Google and Samsung worked together.

Currently, 60 organizations—including 47 mobile carriers, 11 OEMs (original equipment manufacturers), and 2 OS (operating system) providers—support RCS Messaging. Apple is conspicuously absent from the list, and it is unclear what position they will take on working with RCS. Without using a different program, like WhatsApp, communication between iPhone and Android devices now defaults to SMS. Apple may find itself in the minority as the rest of the smartphone industry swings in the direction of better coherence and privacy, which might undermine the grounds against opposing RCS.

How to Enable RCS Messaging on Google Messages?

Here is how you can enable Google RCS messaging.

1. First-time RCS Chats Enablement

You can send messages via Wi-Fi and receive access to additional helpful features when you enable RCS Chats.

You could get a suggestion to activate RCS Chats if your carrier and device are not already set up for it. You could be asked for your phone number in such situations.

Note: From time to time, Jibe Mobile (a Google service) may send you a text message to confirm your phone number. RCS Chats are currently supported by your default or preferred call SIM, and support for more SIMs may be introduced later. The system settings of your smartphone let you modify your default call SIM. Please contact your device's manufacturer if you need help configuring dual SIM.

If your carrier supports RCS but your smartphone isn't already configured for RCS Chats, you could get a notification encouraging you to "Do more with Messages." Whenever you get this notification:

  1. Your device's Messages app should be opened.
  2. Select "Next" to continue after selecting "Get Started.
  3. "Tap "Yes" to be connected to Messages at all times.

2. Turn RCS Chats On or Off

The procedures below can be used to enable or disable RCS conversations.

  1. Launch the Messages application on your phone.
  2. Tap the symbol next to your profile photo in the upper right corner and choose "Messages settings."
  3. Find and choose "RCS chats."
  4. Toggle the switch to enable or disable RCS conversations.

Here are some extra pointers:

- If you can't locate "RCS chats," choose "Chat features" instead.

- RCS conversations can also be turned off via the online interface for messages deactivation. When utilizing your old phone number on a new device, keeping your number after losing or damaging your phone, or switching messaging applications on the same phone but having trouble receiving messages, this is helpful.

3. Understand RCS Chat Status

To determine your RCS chat status, navigate to the Settings menu and locate the option for RCS chats. If you cannot find "RCS chats," simply tap on Chat features instead.

There are several possible statuses you may encounter:

  1. Connected: RCS chats are fully operational and can be used with other individuals who have enabled them.
  2. Setting up: Messages is in the process of verifying your phone number. If verification exceeds a few minutes, select the Retry option next to the status.
  3. Disconnected: RCS chats are temporarily inaccessible. Ensure that you have an active internet connection to resolve this issue.

Benefits Of Using RCS Messaging On Android

RCS text Messages: benefits of RCS

Businesses may provide customers with a more engaging experience thanks to RCS texting. You may send visually appealing communications to your consumers with Rich Media Services that include bigger text, larger files, photos, and even payment buttons. Receiving RCS communications with crisp images, QR codes, comprehensive PDF documents, and entertaining components like animated stickers and GIFs will be appreciated by your consumers.

Your RCS messaging strategy may be improved with the use of AI chatbots, which will increase interaction and increase conversions. Users may have human-like discussions with AI chatbots straight on their phones, negating the need for extra apps. They may promote intuitive discussions, present alternatives, and direct users through decision trees, all of which improve the user experience.

By utilizing the GSMA Universal Profile, RCS communications give security a top priority. Between subscribers of various carriers and countries, this international standard guarantees compatibility and communication. RCS communications protect companies and customers by confirming the validity of the parties engaged with the Universal Profile standard v2.2.

RCS messaging adheres to tight restrictions as a carrier-based service and abides with the laws of legal intercept, unlike certain messaging programs that rely on end-to-end encryption. TLS encryption enables point-to-point security between carrier interfaces and mobile devices, enabling safe data flow in RCS messaging.

What About Apple? Does It Support RCS?

Unfortunately, Apple does not at this time enable RCS text messages. The tech behemoth from Cupertino has not said if it would eventually use the protocol. Because of this, many smartphone users could still rely on programs like WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger to send and receive rich media files like images and videos between Android and iOS devices.

It is yet unclear how Apple's failure to implement RCS would affect its success. Since Apple already offers iMessage to its customers, there may be less of a need to develop robust messaging features to communicate with customers using other platforms. The promise for improved message security for all users, regardless of platform, has led Google to regularly recommend that Apple embrace RCS.

AI Shopping Concierge for Every Customer

AI shopping concierge to learn your customers’ behaviors and respond to any of their requests via text messaging, web chat and Email. Choose App0 today to improve customer service using AI, data and no-code.

See a demo

When Is RCS Messaging Available in The United States? 

Several nations, notably the U.K., France, and Mexico, have been extending the availability of RCS texting. RCS texting is becoming increasingly commonplace, even in the United States. By 2023, RCS Universal Profile 1.0 will be included into the messaging app on practically every T-Mobile Android handset.

RCS texting is available to Verizon customers who own a Pixel 3 or Pixel 3XL through Samsung Messages or Google's Android messaging app. It's crucial to remember that only individuals who have these applications installed can receive RCS messages delivered through these specific apps.

Sending RCS messages to other Android users around the world is now possible for T-Mobile Android customers thanks to a collaboration that T-Mobile and Google announced in May 2020. According to RCS data, T-Mobile users globally send more than 700 million RCS messages per day. This shows that the deployment of RCS communications has advanced significantly.


In conclusion, RCS messaging on Android offers an enhanced messaging experience by providing features such as read receipts, typing indicators, and high-quality media sharing. It brings Android messaging closer to the functionality of popular messaging apps like iMessage and WhatsApp. By enabling RCS on Google Messages, you can take advantage of these advanced features and enjoy a more interactive and engaging messaging experience.

To turn on Google RCS messaging, simply follow the steps outlined in this blog. By ensuring that you have the latest version of Google Messages installed and enabling the Chat features in the app settings, you can enable Google RCS messaging on your Android device. Once activated, you'll be able to enjoy the benefits of RCS and elevate your texting experience to a new level. So, don't wait any longer—turn on RCS and start enjoying a more feature-rich messaging experience on your Android device today.

With App0, you can easily establish connections with your customers through various communication channels, efficiently manage user preferences from a central location, and leverage artificial intelligence to convert notifications into interactive conversations. This allows you to interact with your users at the right time and on their preferred platforms, ultimately increasing customer satisfaction and achieving your desired outcomes. App0's AI capabilities, such as sentiment analysis, empower you to make informed business decisions based on data, thereby enhancing the overall customer experience.

Imagine the convenience of confirming payments through SMS by receiving a simple "Y" response from your customer.

To learn more, Request a Demo today!

Best SMS Marketing Platform For Businesses

Choose App0 to launch conversational AI agents to put all your customer interactions on autopilot. Sign up with App0 for AI-powered text marketing automation for the E-commerce & financial industry.

See a demo

FAQs: RCS Messaging

Launch conversational AI-agents faster and at scale to put all your customer interactions on autopilot.

Download Ebook