Google is practically begging Apple to adopt RCS, but still isn't all-in itself

Posted:
in General Discussion edited October 2022
In the middle of a push by Google to make Apple adopt the RCS messaging standard, a Google executive admits it's been a messy and incomplete process.

RCS messaging
RCS messaging


In recent months, the company has urged Apple to adopt the Rich Communication Services standard. In August, Android created a website highlighting some of the interoperability between Android and iOS.

Some issues include broken group chats, lack of end-to-end encryption and typing indicators, low-quality media, and more. Android believes Apple can solve these problems by adopting RCS.

Still, even Google admits it's half-baked. In a press briefing on October 18, Jan Jedrzejowicz, head of product for Messages by Google, said Google still hasn't finalized the RCS specification.

"There is still quite a lot of shifting and changing in the underlying protocol," he said, talking about pending features such as end-to-end encryption for group chats. "It's just a question of maturity."

Unlike iMessage, end-to-end encryption is not built-in to RCS. However, carriers and companies can add such encryption if they choose. Google added support for this encryption in 2020 but only for one-on-one conversations.

Google also needs to bring RCS to Google Voice. "We recognize that every messaging app that supports SMS, including Google Voice, should update to RCS, but we don't have any news today," Jedrzejowicz added.

For now, RCS is merely an alternative and not yet a standard. Despite adoption by some carriers and companies, even Google admits it needs to make more changes and improvements.

The company also needs to settle on one messaging app for consumers that it will support indefinitely. Google is notorious for killing off services, and pass messengers it has created and killed include Allo, Hangouts on Air, YouTube Messages, Google Spaces, Google Talk, Meebo, and soon - Google Hangouts.

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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 27
    I dunno how Google expects sympathy from Apple after all they've done. Remember when they refused to license turn by turn directions on the iPhone forcing Apple to adopt tomtom's maps to create their own mapping software. Not to mention Google's Schmidt, Page, and Brin friendship betrayal with Apple.
    danoxscstrrfdavbadmonkchiamagman1979ravnorodomBart YAlex_Vcurtis hannah
  • Reply 2 of 27
    danoxdanox Posts: 1,543member
    What are the spying advantages for Google if RCS is used, in short what’s in it for them? By the way iMessage was created because Mac’s and iPhone weren’t being supported, by existing message apps similar to what is currently happening with AAA games, which means if Apple want’s anything to happen they probably will need to roll up their sleeves again and get directly involved in development in-house.

    In the last twenty-four Apple has had to built/create just everything to support their ecosystems to survive physical Apple stores, Apple Pay, Apple Watch, iPod, IPhone, iPad, SOC’s, continuous development of a OS desktop and mobile, Apple Maps etc etc…If Apple doesn’t do it to support their ecosystem who will? third parties are inadequate system wide.
    edited October 2022 scstrrfdavbadmonkchiamagman1979ravnorodomBart YAlex_Vwatto_cobrajony0
  • Reply 3 of 27
    AniMillAniMill Posts: 109member
    I’m a devout iPhone Apple ecosystem user, but I’d have no problem I’d Apple were to adopt RCS. In fact, I detest having the green bubble issue because so many other people I work with or in my family/friends don’t have iPhones, it destroys group chats. Incredibly frustrating!!!! If Apple were to adopt RCS I don’t see a mass exodus to Android, won’t happen. If anything they’ll be an even split of swap adopters AND I’d bet far more iPhone users would be much happier. I know quite a few users who would be too.
    edited October 2022 lkruppwilliamlondoncurtis hannah
  • Reply 4 of 27
    In my family of 5, only 1 is Google user….we
    don’t have a problem of group chats….i must be missing something here??
    MplsPwilliamlondontmaymagman1979Bart YAlex_V
  • Reply 5 of 27
    Why would we want RCS? Specially when it offers no encryption at all. Why would Apple destroy what they have built for an inferior standard? Google needs to suck up to Apple and get access to the iMessage API. Crying and whining like this in public just makes them seem even more infantile
    macseekerwilliamlondonmagman1979ravnorodomBart Ywatto_cobra
  • Reply 6 of 27
    Probably means that Google has figured out a way to steal user data from RCS messaging but has not been able to with iMessages ... at least without being caught and fined like their prior conviction for Safari security controls hacking
    lkruppMplsPmacseekerwilliamlondonmagman1979Bart YAlex_Vwatto_cobra
  • Reply 7 of 27
    lkrupplkrupp Posts: 10,341member
    Kuyangkoh said:
    In my family of 5, only 1 is Google user….we
    don’t have a problem of group chats….i must be missing something here??
    There’s always that crowd that chafes at the thought of Apple doing it’s own thing. That mindset demands Apple be forced into compliance and mediocrity. Green bubbles are evil because they leave Android users feeling left out and discriminated against. 
    williamlondontmaymagman1979Bart YAlex_Vcurtis hannahwatto_cobrajony0
  • Reply 8 of 27
    anonymouseanonymouse Posts: 6,716member
    AniMill said:
    I’m a devout iPhone Apple ecosystem user, but I’d have no problem I’d Apple were to adopt RCS. In fact, I detest having the green bubble issue because so many other people I work with or in my family/friends don’t have iPhones, it destroys group chats. Incredibly frustrating!!!! If Apple were to adopt RCS I don’t see a mass exodus to Android, won’t happen. If anything they’ll be an even split of swap adopters AND I’d bet far more iPhone users would be much happier. I know quite a few users who would be too.
    Funny, most "devout iPhone Apple ecosystem users" don't feel the need to start their posts with that information. Typically, only those who are attempting to disguise their own affiliations start with such "disclaimers".

    And since you start with the so called "green bubble issue", I think we know where you are coming from. But, not only does RCS have nothing to do with eliminating "green bubbles", it would actually necessitate a third, perhaps pink, bubble color. The bubble color indicates the messaging protocol. Currently that's green for SMS and blue for iMessage. If Apple were to add a third protocol to iMessage, they would also need to add a third color to indicate that protocol.

    So, rather than eliminating "green bubbles", RCS would proliferate bubble colors by making even more colors necessary.

    (Really, this green bubble argument is the stupidest thing I have ever heard.)
    Sylas22july2013williamlondontmaymagman1979bloggerblogBart YAlex_Vwatto_cobrajony0
  • Reply 9 of 27
    All of this would have been mute if anyone had made a better product - they didn’t…. So suck it Google, FaceCrook, MicroShaft, etc etc.
    macseekerwilliamlondonmagman1979Bart YAlex_Vwatto_cobra
  • Reply 10 of 27
    badmonkbadmonk Posts: 1,139member
     Google is notorious for killing off services, and pass messengers it has created and killed include Allo, Hangouts on Air, YouTube Messages, Google Spaces, Google Talk, Meebo, and soon - Google Hangouts. ”

    That pretty much says it all.  The days of perceiving Alphabet-Google as a technology moonshot company are over.  They have been transformed into a fickle data-harvesting, advertising-delivery service.

    Until they get their own act together, Apple should just wait.

    Apple has a slow, don’t-release it until it is ready, approach.  BloggerBlog & Danox’s points are spot-on.
    williamlondonmagman1979ravnorodomBart YAlex_Vtmaywatto_cobra
  • Reply 11 of 27
    genovellegenovelle Posts: 1,436member
    AniMill said:
    I’m a devout iPhone Apple ecosystem user, but I’d have no problem I’d Apple were to adopt RCS. In fact, I detest having the green bubble issue because so many other people I work with or in my family/friends don’t have iPhones, it destroys group chats. Incredibly frustrating!!!! If Apple were to adopt RCS I don’t see a mass exodus to Android, won’t happen. If anything they’ll be an even split of swap adopters AND I’d bet far more iPhone users would be much happier. I know quite a few users who would be too.
    Apple does not jump on board Google’s half done projects. When you have changed messaging protocols 9 times in the last 12 years, the chances of this sticking around is minimal. And without end to end encryption and poor image handling what’s the point. Does it even fix the file size limitations?  

    iMessage was released in 2011 and has been heavily invested into by Apple. They initially wanted to make it available to other platforms but they got few takers after the reveal, so they reversed course and made it a platform differentiator for Apple. Now Google is trying to copy it and wants Apple to jump in and fix the mess for them while eliminating the advantage Apple has with iMessage being Apple device only. Don’t expect to see Apple sending data so google can comb through it  happening to soon. 
    williamlondontmaymagman1979Alex_Vwatto_cobra
  • Reply 12 of 27
    mike1mike1 Posts: 3,135member
    Sooooo, Apple should adopt a half-baked protocol they had no input in developing and for which "There is still quite a lot of shifting and changing in the underlying protocol," Yeah, that makes sense.

    magman1979igorskywilliamlondonwatto_cobra
  • Reply 13 of 27
    gatorguygatorguy Posts: 23,513member
    lam92103 said:
    Why would we want RCS? Specially when it offers no encryption at all. 
    You're mistaken. Google's RCS has been end-to-end encrypted for some time now, and in a way that ensures even Google themselves can not read them. 
    https://mashable.com/article/messages-android-end-to-end-encryption
    https://support.google.com/messages/answer/10262381?hl=en#:~:text=End-to-end encryption is,and the phone you message.
    edited October 2022 muthuk_vanalingam
  • Reply 14 of 27
    gatorguy said:
    lam92103 said:
    Why would we want RCS? Specially when it offers no encryption at all. 
    You're mistaken. Google's RCS has been end-to-end encrypted for some time now, and in a way that ensures even Google themselves can not read them. 
    https://mashable.com/article/messages-android-end-to-end-encryption
    https://support.google.com/messages/answer/10262381?hl=en#:~:text=End-to-end encryption is,and the phone you message.
    Unless it's a group chat - no encryption at all for those.
    Alex_V
  • Reply 15 of 27
    Kuyangkoh said:
    In my family of 5, only 1 is Google user….we
    don’t have a problem of group chats….i must be missing something here??
    You’re not missing anything because you’re not a whiny a-hole. 
    Alex_Vwilliamlondonwatto_cobra
  • Reply 16 of 27
    davidwdavidw Posts: 1,742member
    gatorguy said:
    lam92103 said:
    Why would we want RCS? Specially when it offers no encryption at all. 
    You're mistaken. Google's RCS has been end-to-end encrypted for some time now, and in a way that ensures even Google themselves can not read them. 
    https://mashable.com/article/messages-android-end-to-end-encryption
    https://support.google.com/messages/answer/10262381?hl=en#:~:text=End-to-end encryption is,and the phone you message.

    But it's Google (Android) Messages that offers end to end encryption, with RCS. "Google RCS" is basically RCS that goes through Google own servers. The RCS protocol by itself, do not have end to end encryption as a standard. And it's only end to end encryption if both the sender and receiver, are using Google Messages, (going through Google servers.) If one were to use a carrier version of RCS that is hosted on their own servers (instead of Google's servers), then there is no end to end encryption when using RCS. Even if one of them is using "Google RCS" with Messages. 


    So unless there is a Google Messages App on iOS, there is no end to end encryption for iOS users when using RCS. That's not to say that there are no other benefits from using RCS over SMS, but end to end encryption is not one of them (when not using "Google RCS"). If an iOS user wants end to end encryption with an Android user, there are much better and way more popular messaging apps (for both the iOS users and Android users), than Google Messages.


    edited October 2022 tmaywatto_cobra
  • Reply 17 of 27
    Of course it is a standard, it has been a standard since it first appeared, even before iMessage was a thing. RCS is just the successor of MMS and SMS, not supporting it is a mistake. Also RCS could be the way to create interoperability between messengers. But Apple was never really good in accepting outside feedback.
    williamlondon
  • Reply 18 of 27
    mjtomlinmjtomlin Posts: 2,590member
    tehabe said:
    Of course it is a standard, it has been a standard since it first appeared, even before iMessage was a thing. RCS is just the successor of MMS and SMS, not supporting it is a mistake. Also RCS could be the way to create interoperability between messengers. But Apple was never really good in accepting outside feedback.

    Yes, but Google's version is not a standard version of RCS, it is an extension of RCS. Which is what they're pushing Apple to adopt.

    Google is the new Microsoft when it comes to standards; "Embrace, Extend, Exterminate"
    williamlondonwatto_cobra
  • Reply 19 of 27
    igorskyigorsky Posts: 661member
    mjtomlin said:
    tehabe said:
    Of course it is a standard, it has been a standard since it first appeared, even before iMessage was a thing. RCS is just the successor of MMS and SMS, not supporting it is a mistake. Also RCS could be the way to create interoperability between messengers. But Apple was never really good in accepting outside feedback.

    Yes, but Google's version is not a standard version of RCS, it is an extension of RCS. Which is what they're pushing Apple to adopt.
    RCS supporters always (conveniently) leave this factoid out of the conversation.  Google doesn't want Apple to adopt a standard...they want Apple to adopt their standard, to help Google claim messaging parity.
    edited October 2022 williamlondonwatto_cobra
  • Reply 20 of 27
    mjtomlin said:
    tehabe said:
    Of course it is a standard, it has been a standard since it first appeared, even before iMessage was a thing. RCS is just the successor of MMS and SMS, not supporting it is a mistake. Also RCS could be the way to create interoperability between messengers. But Apple was never really good in accepting outside feedback.

    Yes, but Google's version is not a standard version of RCS, it is an extension of RCS. Which is what they're pushing Apple to adopt.

    Google is the new Microsoft when it comes to standards; "Embrace, Extend, Exterminate"
    Source for that, Android Messages uses the RCS Universal Profile, if iOS would support this profile it would be able to sent and receive RCS messages, they would be like SMS and MMS messages, with the ability to also sent photos and other things. At the same time, Apple can remove the MMS support. The end to end encryption Google introduced is based on the Signal protocol, so also available for Apple to implement. The only reason Apple doesn't implement it is probably the same why it doesn't support Opus in an Ogg container or fixes the FLAC support for Music. And it is just a fact, iMessage is meaningless for me. I haven't received a single iMessage message so far.
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