In context: In 2019, Google began rolling out the next generation of text messaging: Rich Communication Services. RCS messaging supports features like read receipts, transparent messaging over wi-fi, as well as named chats, and the ability to add or remove people from group conversations. Now, Google’s RCS implementation is poised to receive another major feature update: end-to-end encryption.
Testers have enjoyed the functionality for months, but Google is just beginning to unroll it To the general public. Well, in a sense, you have to use the Company Messages app to be a part of launching this feature.
If you are not using Messages but would like to, you can hook it up from the Google Play Store. After doing so, unlocking end-to-end encryption will require two additional steps. First, visit the Settings menu of the application (located by tapping the three-dot icon at the top right of the interface), tap “Chat Features” and then toggle the “Enable Chat Features” toggle.
As for step two, it’s even simpler – you’ll just have to wait. Since Google feature deployments can take anywhere from minutes to days to complete, it is unknown when your RCS messages will get full end-to-end encryption. However, when the day comes, you will know: Google will place a handy lock icon over encrypted chats.
Also, even when the update hits your device, you will need to make sure that the people you are communicating with are then using RCS messaging through the Messages application. If not, end-to-end encryption will not be enabled. Finally, group chats will not benefit at all from the feature, even if all participating parties have access to it.
Header Credit: Dennizn