Apple Confirms iPhone Will Support RCS Messaging from Next Year


Looks like Google’s constant pestering has brought great shame to Apple and its blue-bubble empire, as the Cupertino giant has confirmed that it will adopt the RCS messaging standard “early next year.” YES, we are not joking. Only a day after Nothing Chats was announced to bring iMessage support to Android, Apple has played its ace card.

Apple will be embracing the RCS messaging standard, enabling smooth communication between iPhone and Android phones, at last. This will put an end to the blue bubble-green bubble drama, and the humiliation several Android users face in group chats just because they are not a part of Apple’s walled garden.

In an official statement (via 9to5Mac), an Apple spokesperson stated that the company “will be adding support for RCS Universal Profile, the standard as currently published by the GSM Association.” RCS will enable “a better interoperability experience” across iPhones and Android phones as compared to SMS and MMS, which iMessage currently relies on, they added.

It’s (surprising yet) amazing to see that Apple finally agrees to the fact that RCS is better than standard SMS and MMS. But there’s a catch and quite an important one. RCS is not replacing iMessage on iPhones. Instead, the company will be offering RCS support alongside iMessage.

The communication between iPhone users will continue to rely on iMessage, as emphasized in 9to5Mac’s article. This means most of the exclusive iMessage features, be it Memoji, handwritten notes, and much more, will continue to be limited to iPhone users. However, the adoption of RCS will enable a host of cross-platform messaging features like typing indicators, read receipts, the ability to share high-res images and videos, and location sharing, among other things.

When is RCS Coming to Your iPhone?

With this, Android phone users will no longer feel like they aren’t part of the cool club, at least if their friends don’t make them feel that way. Now, a question that you might have is – when is RCS coming to iPhones? Well, Apple did not share an exact date and simply mentioned that RCS messaging support will be added to iPhones with a software update sometime in early 2024.

Google’s efforts and the online movement against the pesky blue bubble finally bore fruit. Tim Cook can no longer push you to buy your mom an iPhone. Finally, for those unaware, RCS stands for ‘Rich Communication Services’ and replaces your age-old SMS and MMS. It brings several benefits such as no character or media file size limits, read receipts, and more.

Moreover, RCS doesn’t limit you to just mobile data and works on Wi-Fi as well. However, RCS does not support end-to-end encryption by default, which iMessage does. So, of course, Apple is quick to point out that iMessage is the “best and most secure messaging experience for Apple users” in its official statement.

Apple finally adopting RCS is obviously a huge thing, but we think the green bubbles will stick around. Well, the reason for that is plain and simple, of course. Apple likes to do things its own way, and it might not want to do away with the identity of iMessage – the blue bubbles are what make it different from Android after all.

We will have to wait and see what the engineers at Cupertino are cooking. Until then, share your views and opinions on this announcement in the comments below.

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