End-to-end encryption is rolling out now for Rich Communication Services (RCS)
Little by little, Google is trying to end the blue bubble jealousy that Android users have suffered with through the years. If two RCS users are exchanging a chat, both will have blue text bubbles just like when an iPhone user is sending an iMessage to another iPhone user.
Originally, all of the major carriers were going to be involved in the Cross Carrier Messaging Initiative (CCMI) allowing each wireless provider to offer a single new RCS app. Ironically, Google was not part of the CCMI which seemed strange in the first place considering that RCS was its baby.
The Cross Carrier Messaging Initiative that would have allowed the major U.S. carriers to work on RCS as a team has been canceled
The major U.S. carriers were hoping to profit from the monetization of the CCMI by allowing their customers to chat with their favorite brands without having to switch apps. Users would be able to schedule appointments, pay bills, order a ride share and more through RCS thanks to the CCMI.
Analyst Lynnette Luna of GlobalData noted that RCS is really important to Google, but pointed out that because of Apple’s iMessage platform, there is no reason for Apple to get involved in RCS, and Apple has half of the U.S. smartphone market. She did say that Google continues to push RCS in the U.S. and that is because the company hopes to make money by pushing business to consumer ads.
Luna added at the time that she didn’t expect Verizon, AT&T or T-Mobile to make a big push for RCS in the states. Consider though that in Japan, 60% of RCS messages are clicked on compared to the 0.001% that click on mobile banner ads. You can understand why Google has such high hopes for RCS as a platform for business.
And with 1 to 1 chats now encrypted end-to-end, Google could still use RCS to pad the top line some more.