T-Mobile (opens in new tab) has announced that Google's Message platform, also known as Rich Communication Services (or RCS for short) will now come as standard on all its current and future Android phones, giving the service quite a boost amongst potential users.
In recent times, Google has been keen to make its Messages app more popular across the Android ecosystem in a bid to compete with Apple's iMessage service. Agreeing such a significant deal with what we regard to be one of the best cell phone providers (opens in new tab) out there should go some way to helping cement the service and potentially encouraging Android users into using it over third-party solutions such as WhatsApp, Signal or Telegram.
T-Mobile was an early adopter of the RCS protocol that ties into Messages back in 2015 and, last year, it also became one of the first carriers to implement a full standards-based interconnect with Messages. That meant that T-Mobile subscribers could use some of the protocol's best features including typing indicators and read receipts when messaging people outside of the US - something that was sure to entice many people into using it more readily. It’s now the first US carrier to make Google Messages its default messaging app.
It's likely that many users will at least try out Messages if it's already set up as the default messaging service on their new handset, and with plenty of useful features, it could make you wonder why you even need to return to WhatsApp or Facebook Messenger, both of which have suffered controversies in the past few months. Those features include sending photos and videos, the aforementioned read receipts, along with sharing reactions, and group chat facilities.
At the same time as this announcement, Google also stated that it will be adding support for end-to-end encryption in Messages later this year via a beta rollout. Google and T-Mobile's partnership is also expanding with the carrier promoting Google's Pixel phones, as well as dropping its own TV service in favor of YouTube TV. T-Mobile customers will now get $10 off the regular YouTube TV price bringing it down to $54.99 per month. It's also picking out Google One as the preferred phone backup and cloud storage service for all T-Mobile customers.
Expect to see a lot more of the Google Pixel (opens in new tab) range in a T-Mobile store near you, but for good reason. The 3a and 4XL are among our best smartphones (opens in new tab), and for good reason. This partnership could prove useful for Google fans, saving some time and effort with setup.