Beginning today, Android users on Sprint will be introduced to RCS (Rich Communications Services) messaging, thanks to the efforts of Google and its Messenger application. With the universal RCS profile, which was created by carriers and other companies to become a standard for all SMS activity used by billions of people across the world, all SMS users are treated to group chat, high-resolution photo sharing capabilities, as well as read receipts.
In order to bring this new SMS experience to all Android users on the carrier, Sprint customers utilizing an Android device will see their standard SMS app upgraded to the Messenger app, developed by Google. The service is powered by the Jibe RCS cloud, another Google service.
Starting next year, all newly sold Android devices from Sprint will come with Messenger preloaded as the default SMS and RCS messaging client. Currently, only those with a select LG or Nexus device on Sprint will see their messaging client updated automatically, but all other Sprint customers on Android can simply download the Messenger app from Google Play.
According to Google, they are working hard to bring RCS messaging to everyone else in the US with the help of other carrier partners.