92 percent of people who own a smartphone use their device for text messaging regularly, more so than any other function, of which there are many that modern day phones are capable. That 92 percent is a statistic that T-Mobile’s Chief Technology Officer Neville Ray brought up in their press release about the announcement for T-mobile’s new Advanced Messaging feature. Essentially it’s T-Mobile taking their old and boring text messaging technology and giving it a much-needed boost by building it on a standard called Rich Communications Services, with new functionality and plenty of energy to give subscribers a more robust messaging experience with the devices right out of the box, instead of having to search for an app to install.
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While messaging apps like Whatsapp, Facebook’s Messenger, Hangouts, and others are arguably very popular and have hundreds of millions of users, most (excluding hangouts of course which generally now comes preinstalled on Android devices) don’t come as preloaded apps and they have to be downloaded and installed. Forget the fact that you may have to convince your friends and family to switch to a messaging platform they’ve never used just to stay in touch. What T-Mobile is doing with Advanced Messaging is bringing features that are present in these popular apps to the standard messaging tech that’s already built into the phones.
For starters and in addition to sending just a plain old text that you’ll be home in 20 minutes, the new Advanced Messaging adds features like rich one on one and group messaging as well as chat that is near real-time. That’s all well and good, but what about media? T-Mobile seems to have this covered too as Advanced Messaging will support the sending of high-resolution pictures and videos between users for files up to 10MB. It’ll also allow users to see what other people are typing as the messages are coming in should they already be in the message or chat thread, and Advanced Messaging isn’t device or platform specific. T-Mobile states they built it to work on any phone regardless of the manufacturer it came from or the mobile OS that it runs on. Advanced Messaging should be live as of now, but it currently only comes built-in to the Samsung Galaxy Grand Prime. T-Mobile does mention however that a software update will be heading to Galaxy S5 and Galaxy S6 devices as the next phones to support Advanced Messaging, with more devices getting support for it throughout 2015. T-Mobile also states that more features will be built of the RCS technology in the future, so there could be more interesting features coming soon.