Saturday, December 4, 2021

The messy past and uncertain future of RCS

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Every Tuesday on The Vergecast, we’re pulling apart a different new tech standard that is designed to replace tech standards before it. Last week, we explored the fractious history and fraught future of USB-C. This week, we’re talking about Rich Communication Services, or RCS. Will it replace SMS? Google is trying to make it happen.

To really understand why Google is going all-in on RCS, you have to understand that there’s a rich and complicated history of messaging apps at Google and also RCS’s own history that’s entirely separate from Google. On the Vergecast RCS special, Verge executive editor Dieter Bohn walks you through the messy past and uncertain future of the texting standard.

Dieter also talks with Sanaz Ahari, senior director of communications products at Google, and Ron Amadeo, reviews editor at Ars Technica, to help explain how RCS works, why it’s dependent on the big three US carriers, what features can be added to the service in the future, and of course, whether Apple will ever support it on the iPhone.

Listen here or in your preferred podcast player for the full episode of our RCS special.

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