AT&T, T-Mobile, Sprint and Verizon team up to push next-gen RCS texting

Google has been working on a new system of text messaging that will improve security and totally upgrade this popular messaging service. For many years Apple I-Messaging has been far superior to SMS messaging used by android devices, but this will be changing starting in 2020 when all the major cell companies start rolling out RCS texting.

To enable the service, the CCMI joint venture is working to develop and deploy the standards-based, interoperable messaging service starting with Android and expected in 2020. Working with its carrier ownership group and other companies in the RCS ecosystem, the CCMI service will:

  • Drive a robust business-to-consumer messaging ecosystem and accelerate the adoption of Rich Communications Services (RCS)
  • Enable an enhanced experience to privately send individual or group chats across carriers with high quality pictures and videos
  • Provide consumers with the ability to chat with their favorite brands, order a rideshare, pay bills or schedule appointments, and more
  • Create a single seamless, interoperable RCS experience across carriers, both in the U.S. and globally

Details on exactly how they’ll do that are scant, and while Android is mentioned in the announcement, Google and Samsung are missing. The parts of the plan that we know, are that a new app/service is supposed to launch on Android first next year. There’s no word on support for iOS, and it will be interesting to see if the supposedly open standard crosses platforms.

The other big part of the opportunity is related to businesses. The carriers think RCS could be the backbone of a way to do all kinds of customer support and sales via your phone, and forming a joint venture could be a way to get a piece of that.

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