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Google really doesn't want you using RCS in unsupported regions (Updated)
Update, February 11, 2020 (11:30 AM ET): A recent announcement by Google revealed the company is taking active measures to stop users from utilizing any hacks to get RCS messaging on their devices in unsupported regions. Users should expect to see this change by the end of the month. This appears to be a server-side update so no version of the Google Messages app should be immune to the patch.
“As we prepare to bring chat features to more regions, users who have gotten chat features through unsupported workarounds where chat features aren’t available yet will see them disabled by the end of February,” said a Google spokesperson. “For these users, chat features will be disabled for all versions of the app, including older versions.”
Google previously disabled this workaround only for users to find it working again shortly after. It’s possible people could find yet another way to force this functionality in the future, but we hope Google just rolls out RCS support to more regions so people don’t have to.
Original article, November 1, 2019 (07:05 AM ET): RCS is meant to be the next evolution of SMS, allowing for a host of new features. Unfortunately, carriers have been taking their sweet time to support the function.
A Google Messages trick earlier this week allowed users around the world to enable RCS messaging on their phones, but it seems like this workaround was short-lived.
Some users on reddit (h/t: 9to5Google) who used this trick are now reporting that RCS functionality has been disabled on their phones. It doesn’t seem to be affecting all phones though, but loads of OnePlus owners are reporting that RCS no longer works.
It would be a pity if the RCS messaging hack was intentionally patched up, as the tech brings a variety of features compared to traditional text messaging. The upgraded SMS standard enables higher resolution image sharing, location sharing, typing indicators, group chats, and video calls.
Has RCS been disabled on your phone after using the Google Messages hack? Let us know in the comments!