Learn How You Can Now Enable RCS Right Now On Android!
Short Link: http://www.jsmtech.org/enable-rcs
Read Time: 6 min
I am so excited! There is now a way to enable RCS on your Android phone!!! Normally, we would have had to wait for our carriers to do this for us, but I’m going to guess you know the woes of carriers.
Why Am I so Excited?
Why am I so excited? And what is RCS in the first place? Well, Android messaging up to date has not been great. We’re still stuck on SMS and MMS messaging protocols which are years old and can’t match modern-day messaging standards. Apple, on the other hand, has iMessage which adds its own features to your typical SMS and MMS messages. iMessages are encrypted, have read-receipts, let you see when the other party is typing, allows you to share large files, give you previews of links, and the list goes on and on.
iMessage is, however, proprietary and Apple has made it clear that they don’t plan on letting it be cross-platform. That’s why RCS excites me a lot. It finally allows Andriod to fight back and give its users a better messaging experience. On top of that, RCS aims to be cross-platform and open to any message app-maker or carrier/phone-maker. This means that third-party apps can implement RCS as well as even Apple is they ever decide to. RCS will essentially revolutionize texting for everyone regardless of a user's choice of hardware or software.
How To Enable RCS On Android
I’m not exactly sure if you can enable RCS on an iPhone, but knowing Apple, it’s going to be really hard or downright impossible until they decide to through in the rope and join the rest of the world. However, that doesn’t stop us from enabling RCS on Android :)
The following steps should get RCS enabled on your phone. I think the best RCS messaging app as of now is going to be Google’s very own Andriod Messages app. As a plus, it’s a pretty good-looking modern martial-designed app. My intructions are an adapted version from Andriod Central, so feel free to go over there and check it out (https://www.androidcentral.com/want-rcs-chat-your-phone-now-heres-how-enable-it).
Step 1 – Android Messages Beta Program
The first step is to get on the beta program for Andriod messages so you have the latest RCS features. You can either search for “Messages” in the Google Play Store or go there directly with this link (https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.google.android.apps.messaging&hl=en_US). Then just scroll down until you see the beta program details and hit the join button. Andriod Messages should update for you automatically.
Step 2 – Activity Launcher
This step has three sub-steps…
We need to enable a flag on the Andriod Messages app. The easiest way to do that is to get the Activity Launcher app. Again, you can either search for it in the Play Store or use this direct link (https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=de.szalkowski.activitylauncher). Just a note, I hate how old the Activity Launcher app looks, but I guess you gotta do what you gotta do.
Before we open up the Activity Launcher app to enable the Andriod Messages RCS flag, we need to make sure the “carrier services” app data is cleared and Andriod Messages isn’t running. While the process of clearing app data and killing an app on most Android phones is slightly different, typically you can just navigate to your system settings, go to the app section, and then find the desired app.
- On the app settings section, find the app named “carrier services”
- Once you’ve clicked on it find and hit the option that says “clear data” or something like that.
- You may need to make sure that system apps are shown on the app section page to find the carrier services app in the first place.
- While you’re on the app page, search for Andriod Messages
- Hit the stop or kill button.
Great, now we need to open up Activity Launcher. Click on the drop-down at the top and select the “recent activities” option. Now search for Andriod Messages, it’s named “Messages” though, so it will most likely be under the “m” section. Once you’ve found it, tap on its name and under the options that appear, select “Set RCS flags.”
- In the “ACS URL” field, enter the following URL. If the URL is listed there, just select it instead.
- “http://rcs-acs-prod-us.sandbox google.com/” without the quotes.
- In the “OTP Pattern” field select the option that’s available to you.
- Hit apply and close the app.
And you’re just one more step away from RCS!
Step 4 – Open Andriod Messages
If you open Andriod Messages, you’ll get a prompt that will ask you if you’d like to upgrade your messaging experience. Affirm to Messages that you’d like to do that and you’ll see a page like this.
It should then take a few minutes to enable RCS for you, but you’ll see a checkmark once it's done and you’ll then be returned to Andriod Messages’ main screen.
Congrats, you now have RCS!!!!
Spread The Word!
You now have RCS, congratulations, you deserve a pat on the back :) Unfortunately, in order for RCS to work, the person you’re texting also needs RCS as well. Don’t fret though, all you need to do is share this post with them and tell them that they should enable RCS! As you've seen, it’s pretty simple and doesn’t take more than 10 minutes of your time.
Additionally, let me know what you think about RCS in general. The comment box is down below and is just dying to be used XD