Eventually, Apple’s Messages app will assist RCS and scheduling texts | TechCrunch


The most important updates coming to Apple’s iMessage and its Messages app in iOS 18 aren’t its AI emoji, Genmoji, and even the flexibility to ship texts through satellite tv for pc. It’s the flexibility to lastly, lastly schedule messages to ship at a later date and time, in addition to assist for RCS, the next-gen messaging commonplace and substitute for SMS that can make texting with Android people a lot much less painful.

Although buried amid a slate of AI bulletins and different consumer interface tweaks at WWDC 2024, these messaging options may have a big impression on how individuals talk day-after-day.

For years, client demand for scheduling messages has led builders to create difficult and cumbersome workarounds, like apps that remind you through push notifications to ship a textual content, for instance, or options that solely labored on jailbroken iPhones. The brand new iOS will provide the flexibility to schedule your messages to be despatched later as built-in performance.

The function solely obtained a quick point out at WWDC. In Apple’s press launch, it was introduced in the identical sentence because the Tapbacks improve, which has expanded to incorporate assist for any emoji or sticker in iOS 18. Clearly, Apple doesn’t assume “Send Later” is a function value spending a lot time on. However for anybody who runs a enterprise from their iPhone — or individuals who solely keep in mind the essential issues they should textual content whereas laying in mattress at 3 a.m. — the brand new scheduling function can be a much-welcomed addition. Past merely making life simpler, like once you need to textual content somebody throughout time zones with out disturbing them, Apple’s screenshot suggests you may additionally use the function to make sure you don’t miss sending somebody a birthday greeting.

Of even better significance, nevertheless, is the Messages app’s assist for RCS, the messaging commonplace and substitute for SMS that can tackle most of the grievances of texting these Android customers with a inexperienced bubble.

Picture Credit: Apple

For a very long time, Google has urged and campaigned for Apple to undertake the usual, which might enhance the communication expertise between Android and iOS customers. The Wall Avenue Journal ran a report on the struggle over the inexperienced bubbles and the way blue bubbles are vital for U.S. teenagers. Whereas EU regulators in the end determined that iMessage was not widespread sufficient to be compelled to open up and develop into interoperable with different messaging companies, the extra scrutiny possible influenced Apple’s choice right here — as did U.S. lawmakers’ curiosity in Apple’s shutdown of Beeper, a third-party app that introduced iMessage to Android customers.

Due to Apple’s longtime refusal so as to add assist for RCS, texting with Android customers meant no typing indicators or learn receipts, damaged group chats and blurry photographs and movies. It additionally meant that messages wouldn’t be end-to-end encrypted as they had been on iMessage.

Sadly for Android customers, Messages despatched through RCS gained’t be relieved of the inexperienced bubble curse on Apple units in keeping with screenshots on its web site, which present the function in motion. As a substitute, the textual content field signifies in a light-weight grey font that your texts with somebody assist each “Text message + RCS,” whereas the texts themselves are nonetheless inexperienced.

Nonetheless, points that make the Messages app a damaged expertise for Apple’s clients can be addressed, it appears, as Apple says it should assist the usual later this yr. The information, in fact, solely obtained a quick point out in Apple’s press launch, the place it famous that RCS would enable for “richer media and more reliable group messaging compared to SMS and MMS.”

Earlier reviews indicated Apple intends to work with the GSMA so as to add assist for end-to-end encryption within the Common Profile for RCS, however gained’t assist E2EE out of the gate. That’s possible why there was no point out of encrypted messaging in Apple’s announcement of RCS.

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