When two Google Messages users have a one-on-one conversation, all messages are encrypted end-to-end. Therefore, if the CEO of Coca-Cola and the CEO of Kentucky Fried Chicken want to exchange secret formulas, they can do so knowing that no one else will know the formulas they are exchanging (remember, this is a hypothetical example).
Suppose, however, that the CEO of Krispy Kreme wishes to share his company’s secret doughnut recipe with the other two executives in exchange for their secrets. That would pose a problem. Why? Because, until recently, Google Messages group chats were not encrypted. However, this is now changing.
Group chat encryption begins rolling out to Google Messages beta testers
Google announced earlier this year that it was working on adding encryption to its Messages app’s group chats. According to Droid-Life, some Google Messages beta testers have begun receiving this feature. To participate in the Google Messages beta, you must first install the Google Messages app on your Android device.
After installing the Google Messages app, follow this link to join the beta program. You have the option to switch back to the public version at any time. This author has been a Google Messages beta tester for years, and if you want the newest features before anyone else, you should consider joining. You should also join the Carrier Services beta program, which you can do by clicking on this link.
Here’s the deal, Android users: If you want to take advantage of the features offered by Rich Communication Services (RCS), you must not only download Google Messages from the Play Store but also communicate with other users of the same Messaging app. RCS-to-RCS messaging permits the sending of longer messages, longer and enhanced videos and images, a read receipt, a typing indicator, blue text bubbles, and encryption.
However, you must remember the following. If one participant in a group chat uses an iPhone or one of those carrier-supported messaging apps, such as Verizon Messages (found in the Play Store), all of these wonderful features are rendered inoperable. Does this sound familiar? The only distinction between this and Apple’s iMessage is that users of Google Messages do not mock or intimidate iPhone users who join their group messages.
Google hopes SMS texting 30th birthday greetings
In addition to group chat encryption, beta testers will be the first to receive the ability to respond to a message using any available emoji. As of now, only seven emoji can be used as reaction icons (thumbs up, smiley face with heart-shaped eyes, laughing with tears, surprised look, sad face with a tear, frowning face, and thumbs down).
Google also published a blog post about RCS today in which it made fun of Apple’s lack of RCS support. Google claimed in its blog post that Apple’s texting platform is stuck in the 1990s. Group Product Manager for Messages by Google, Neena Budhiraja, wrote, “The majority of the mobile industry uses RCS, but one company is lagging. However, after 30 years of SMS texting, the time has come.”
Google also noted that the first text message will celebrate its 30th birthday tomorrow. The Alphabet subsidiary and search titan stated: “Hopefully Apple will #GetTheMessage and remove the entire “green versus blue bubble” issue immediately. Happy birthday, SMS; you had a good run, but everyone is eager for an upgrade.”