Google Messages is working on a new badge to highlight RCS chats – Android Police

The feature appears to be under testing for now
RCS messaging has been a staple of Google Messages since the feature first began rolling out to US customers in late 2019. Since then, Messages has picked up some additional features that enhance the RCS messaging experience, specifically from a security perspective. Google is now rolling out an update to the beta version of the app carrying a visual tweak aimed at improving the visibility of RCS chats from the main list of conversations.
As first discovered by 9to5Google, the feature highlights the chats that have RCS enabled with a Messages icon/badge in the bottom right corner of a contact's profile picture. Another nice touch is that this badge can adapt according to your Android phone's default color scheme. However, it's currently limited to the latest beta version of Messages, more specifically, version 20230615_02_RC00.
In its current form, users have to navigate to an individual chat's text field to learn whether it's an "RCS Message" or "Text message," with the latter being the standard SMS/MMS. As 9to5 rightly points out, this could be part of a broader push by Google to make RCS chats stand out more prominently, which has already built a significant gulf between itself and traditional SMS in terms of features.
In one of the recent Messages updates, Google removed the navigation drawer from the app's homescreen, replacing it with the Google logo and Messages branding. This was preceded by Messages letting users know if their messages have been delivered from the conversation list, saving them the trouble of manually opening the chat to check the status.
Despite the myriad benefits of RCS chats versus conventional texting — including features like Magic Compose — one of the most profitable smartphone companies in the world, Apple, continues to shy away from the standard. Google has repeatedly campaigned for the iPhone maker to enable RCS on iMessage, but it has mostly fallen on deaf ears.

Chethan Rao is a news writer at Android Police, primarily focusing on weekend coverage. He has covered tech for over a decade and has a soft spot for the latest Android hardware. CR usually scours the internet for live cricket streams or watches NBA highlights in his free time. He also enjoys the occasional hour or two of console/mobile gaming.


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