Google Messages finally admits ‘chat’ is RCS

Messages puts RCS chat front and centre

It seems Google is giving up and finally just calling it RCS.

The search giant has been hard at work pushing Rich Communication Services (RCS) as the new de facto messaging protocol between smartphones, going so far as to engage in an extensive bullying campaign against Apple for doing everything in its power not to adopt RCS.

The thing is, Google has so far shied away from actually calling RCS by its name until now. All through Google’s Messages app, the word ‘chat’ is used instead of RCS. That’s changing now — as spotted by 9to5Google, Google now uses ‘RCS chat’ throughout the Message app.

According to 9to5, the changes show up in various places. Text that previously read “Enable chat features” now reads “Turn on RCS chats.” Messages now specifies whether you’re using SMS/MMS or messing with an “RCS message.” Another change; “RCS chat with [contact]” rather than “Chatting with [contact].”

RCS Chat

Messages with the old ‘chat’ branding (left) and new ‘RCS chat’ branding (right) | Image credit: 9to5Google

Currently, the change is rolling out to users in the Messages open beta — I haven’t received it yet, but I tend to get these changes after everyone else.

While it may not seem like a big deal overall, it could be a subtle way for Google to build name recognition for RCS. Given the company’s other efforts trying to convince people to use RCS (and trying to convince Apple to get on board), this could prove helpful. On its own, though, I don’t think putting RCS front and centre will win over new users.

Update 2023/02/22 at 4:10pm ET: Fixed a typo in the third paragraph.

Image credit: Google

Source: 9to5Google