Messages (Google)


Google Messages logo.svg
TypeSMS, RCS, Instant messaging
Launch date2014; 7 years ago (2014)
Platform(s)Android, web

Messages (formerly known as Android Messages) is an SMS, RCS, and instant messaging application developed by Google for its Android mobile operating system. A web interface is also available. Launched in 2014, it has supported RCS messaging since 2018, marketed as "chat features".[1] By April 2020, the app had more than a billion installs[2] which was most likely due to Google's wider roll out of RCS to many different countries without carrier support.[3]


The SMS apps original base coding was integrated into the android system in 2009.[4] It wasn't until the alteration to be an app running system was it first release as its own individual application with Android. The app was released as Messenger along with the release of Android 5.0 Lollipop in 2014 and replaced Google Hangouts as the default SMS app on Google's Nexus line of phones.[5]

In 2018 the system evolved to send larger data files, sync with other apps, and even create mass messages.[6] This was in preparation for when Google launched messages for web.[7]

In December 2019, Google rolled out support for RCS messaging (marketed as chat features) in the United States, United Kingdom, France and Mexico.[8] This was followed by a wider global rollout throughout 2020.[9]

The app surpassed 1 billion installs in April 2020,[10] doubling its number of installs in less than a year.[11]

Initially, the app did not support end-to-end encryption,[12] but in November 2020, Google announced that end-to-end encryption would be rolling out to users starting with beta testers that month.[13] According to the announcement, all RCS-based conversations between users of Messages will be end-to-end encrypted by default using the Signal Protocol, starting with one-to-one conversations.[14][15] The feature was widely rolled out in June 2021, in addition to the launch of starred messages.[16]

Beginning with the Samsung Galaxy S21, Messages replaces Samsung's in-house Messages app as the default messaging app for One UI in selected markets.[17] In April 2021, the app began to receive a modification to its user interface in markets outside of the U.S. when running on recent Samsung phones, which adheres to its use of larger headers within in-house apps to improve ergonomics.[18][19]


The app supports Rich Communication Services using Jibe's servers which uses the RCS's Universal Profile,[20] marketed to consumers as "chat features".[1] It also features an integration with Google's video calling app Duo.[21] Messages is also available on the web which allows sending and receiving of the messages through the web, but requires the phone to be connected to the internet.[22] Messages for the web also features integration with Google Duo.[23]

See also


  1. ^ a b Bohn, Dieter (April 19, 2018). "Exclusive: Chat is Google's next big fix for Android's messaging mess". The Verge.
  2. ^ "Google Messages passes one billion installs on the Play Store". Android Police. 2020-05-01. Retrieved 2020-05-25.
  3. ^ "Google seems to be rolling out RCS support in Messages to more countries". Android Police. 2020-05-14. Retrieved 2020-05-25.
  4. ^ Ciurana, Eugene (2009-03-22). Developing with Google App Engine. Apress. ISBN 978-1-4302-1832-6.
  5. ^ "Google: The New "Messenger" App In Android 5.0 Is A Stock SMS/MMS Solution, Not A Hangouts Replacement / Rebrand". Android Police. 2014-10-15. Retrieved 2020-05-25.
  6. ^ [1], "Computer messaging bot creation", issued 2016-06-14 
  7. ^ Villas-Boas, Antonio. "Android users who are jealous of iMessage need to know about Google's 'Messages for web' service, which lets you text from almost any computer". Business Insider.
  8. ^ "Google Messages get RCS on Android to make it more like Apple iMessage". CNBC. 2019-12-18. Retrieved 2020-07-30.
  9. ^ "Google seems to be rolling out RCS support in Messages to more countries". Android Police. 2020-05-14. Retrieved 2020-05-25.
  10. ^ "Google Messages passes one billion installs on the Play Store". Android Police. 2020-05-01. Retrieved 2020-05-25.
  11. ^ "Google's Android Messages passes 500 million installs on the Play Store". Android Police. 2019-05-25. Retrieved 2020-05-25.
  12. ^ Haselton, Todd (December 18, 2019). "Google makes texting on Android more like Apple's iMessage but with one less safeguard against spying eyes". CNBC.
  13. ^ "Helping you connect around the world with Messages". Google. 2020-11-19. Retrieved 2020-11-19.
  14. ^ Bohn, Dieter (19 November 2020). "Google is rolling out end-to-end encryption for RCS in Android Messages beta". The Verge. Vox Media, Inc. Retrieved 28 November 2020.
  15. ^ Omara, Emad (November 2020). "Messages End-to-End Encryption Overview" (PDF). Retrieved 28 November 2020.
  16. ^ Clark, Mitchell (2021-06-15). "Google adds E2E RCS encryption to Messages, emoji mashup suggests, and more for Android". The Verge. Retrieved 2021-06-16.
  17. ^ Rayome, Alison DeNisco. "Samsung Galaxy S21 makes Google Messages app native, but there's a catch". CNET. Retrieved 2021-04-28.
  18. ^ Porter, Jon (2021-04-28). "Google Messages gets One UI-inspired redesign on recent Samsung flagships". The Verge. Retrieved 2021-04-28.
  19. ^ Tibken, Shara. "Samsung redesigns its smartphone user interface with One samsung UI". CNET. Retrieved 2019-02-20.
  20. ^ "Why RCS?". Retrieved 2020-05-25.
  21. ^ "Make calls with Google Duo - Android - Messages Help". Retrieved 2020-05-25.
  22. ^ "Check your messages on your computer - Messages Help". Retrieved 2020-05-25.
  23. ^ Li, Abner (2019-10-24). "Messages for web adds Google Duo calling integration". 9to5Google. Retrieved 2020-05-25.