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Google bans businesses from using RCS for promotion in India

Google has banned companies from using Rich Communication Services (RCS) for marketing in India, the company’s biggest market by users, in a setback for the standard the company hopes will help become the future of SMS messaging, following accusations of rampant spam by some companies.

In May, during the Android portion of Google I/O 2022, Google revealed that RCS messaging had more than 500 million users worldwide. The company was specifically referring to monthly active RCS users using the Google Messages app.

According to TechCrunch, RCS is the result of a collaboration between several industry players to improve traditional SMS with modern features such as richer texts and end-to-end encryption.

RCS support has been extended to hundreds of millions of people around the world in recent years by Google, Samsung and a number of other companies, including telecommunications providers. Google reported in May that the number of monthly active users using RCS messaging in the Android Messages app had exceeded 500 million. RCS also aims to allow companies to reach users in a more participatory way, and the company urged “any mobile operating system” (a sly jab at Apple) to support it at its developer conference.

According to TechCrunch, the problem is that many Indian organizations, including major banks and other lending institutions, have abused the feature to send unsolicited promotional material to any phone number they can discover. in the country.

RCS is a next-generation texting system that is expected to eventually replace SMS by most carriers around the world. It has read receipts, high-quality attachments, and typing hints, along with the majority of features you’d expect from a modern email program. RCS is called “Chat” in Google’s Android Messages app, which is a friendlier term for the service.

RCS providers may be able to see the content of your messages and, upon appropriate request, may provide them to the government. When they are sent to your phoneGoogle said it would destroy them from its servers, The Verge reported in 2019.

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