In almost all major Google events in 2023, we saw the company come out and drop a subtle line asking Apple to support its RCS, or Rich Communication Services messages. RCS chat is seen as the next step in carrier-supported messaging and the successor to SMS. And after all those ‘wink and smile’ moments directed at Apple, the Cupertino-based tech giant has finally announced support for RCS in iPhones starting in 2024. But, there’s a catch! When Google made those pleas, it was also to ask Apple to end the green vs blue bubble which indicates whether the sender of the message is using an iPhone or an Android phone — but Google will not like the color Apple has in store for RCS (it’s not blue).
Apple gave a statement to 9to5Mac where it confirmed the support to RCS. It said, “Later next year, we will be adding support for RCS Universal Profile, the standard as currently published by the GSM Association. We believe RCS Universal Profile will offer a better interoperability experience when compared to SMS or MMS. This will work alongside iMessage, which will continue to be the best and most secure messaging experience for Apple users”.
Later, Apple also revealed that the RCS messages will show up in green color, unlike messages sent from the iPhone, which will be represented in blue. The rationale behind this is to highlight the company’s belief that the iMessage is the best and most secure way to send messages.
RCS won’t end the green vs blue debates
The blue bubbles of iMessage have become a cultural status, and somehow a reason for iPhone users to separate from Android users. Its cultural significance can be seen in the fact that almost all forms of media representation, from movies to social media posts, have touched upon this issue in some form.
Many Android users believe that being highlighted in green often makes them feel like secondary citizens in a conversation. It has triggered the peer pressure culture and often pushed Android users to switch to iPhones just to avoid being put in such situations.
Google’s argument stems from the fact that RCS also comes with enhanced security measures which should end the debate, but Apple digresses.
RCS brings a wide range of features to carrier-based messaging including support for photos, messaging over WiFi, group messaging, and typing indicators (to let you know when someone is typing), and end-to-end encryptions.