Google has disabled the ability for companies to use RCS for promotion in India, the company’s largest market by users, following reports of rampant spam by some companies in a setback to the standard the company hopes it will be. the future of SMS messaging. Rich Communication Services, or RCS, is the collective effort of a number of industry players to enhance traditional SMS with modern features such as richer text and end-to-end encryption. Google, Samsung, and several other companies, including telecom carriers, have provided RCS support to hundreds of millions of users around the world in recent years. Google said last month that RCS messaging in the Messages app for Android had amassed more than 500 million monthly active users. At its developer conference last month, the company also urged that “all mobile operating systems” (in a subtle jab at Apple) support RCS, which also aims to help companies reach mobile users. a more interactive way. The problem, however, is that dozens of companies in India, including major banks and other lending firms, have abused the feature to send unsolicited promotional materials to the phone number of any individual they can find in the country.
Google Messages is becoming the worst Google app possible. The number of ads it sends out is insane, multiples every day. Yes, these are NOT messages, they are advertisements that the app sends to 🇮🇳 Indian users. It is the default messaging app on most Android phones here. 😑 pic.twitter.com/8EYnIh5cd9—Ishan Agarwal (@ishanagarwal24) May 16, 2022
Several users started complaining on Twitter last month and it seems that their messages reached Google. In a statement, Google acknowledged that “some companies are abusing our anti-spam policies to send promotional messages to users in India.” As a result of that, Google said it is disabling the feature as it “works with the industry to improve the user experience.”