Google is partnering with the mobile industry on an expansion of RCS messaging services in an effort to help connect all Android users in a way that allows for a better native messaging experience on their devices. This new partnership will seek to deploy RCS messages to more users across more devices on more networks and services, as RCS messaging, or Rich Communication Services messaging, adds a handful of benefits to the texting experience that isn't currently available on devices or networks that don't support the standard, such as being able to see when someone is replying in real-time.
The new partnership with Google includes working with 43 different carriers and device manufacturers to get everything up and running and to hopefully extend RCS messaging to all Android users, or as many users as is possible. As part of this partnership Google has been working with businesses and corporations across the U.S. to foster better communication between the business and their customers, all built on the back of RCS. Businesses like Sprint, 1-800 Contacts, 1-800 Flowers, Booking.com, and others, have all been part of a pilot program in the country that started in 2017 as a way to reach this goal of better communication. Google plans to continue this with more businesses across the U.S. and even outside the U.S. to make RCS more globally available between customers and businesses going forward. Google does not however mention which regions or businesses will be included.
In regards to the carriers and manufacturers that are partnering with Google currently, this includes carriers like AT&T, America Movil, Deutsche Telekom, Globe Telecom, Orange, Rogers, and Sprint among others, while OEMs like TCL, BLU, HMD Global, HTC, Kyocera, Motorola, ZTE and others are committed to working with Google and the carriers on setting a standard with the Jibe RCS Hub to make better, richer text messaging an available service to wireless carrier subscribers across networks and countries. All of this of course is going to utilize Android Messages as the default messaging app for RCS messaging to work, so that means more and more phones with more carriers and in more countries will start to have this as the default app installed for texting going forward, though Google doesn't mention any concrete timing when it comes to deployment.