Android texts might get this iMessage feature soon

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A new leak suggests that Android texts might soon receive an important update, including some stellar features that have been supported on rivals for years.

RCS, or rich communication services, is the new messaging protocol ready to power next-generation texting for Android. So far, Google hasn’t been successful in making RCS a universal standard, but its efforts have been making some steady progress for widespread adoption.

But as rogue hacker Jane Manchun Wong revealed on Twitter, Google is also working towards giving Android Messages a wider set of features, like emoji reactions.

 
As her tweet shows, beta code for Messages shows a functional emoji reaction feature, where users can express agreement, amusement, and more for a certain message by selecting an emoji to appear beside it. This feature is widely available on other popular messaging clients, like Facebook Messenger or Apple’s iMessages (known as Tapback).

While the feature obviously hasn’t reached official release quite yet, it adds to RCS’s already diverse toolbelt, which includes modern conveniences like read receipts, typing alerts, and messaging over Wi-Fi or LTE. Texts on Android will need to catch on with these contemporary features in order to match the experience offered by many competitors.

With a robust set of features and compatibility with all major US carriers, RCS clearly has the potential to rejuvenate Android’s outdated messaging infrastructure. Now, if only it was adopted as the standard already.

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