Google and Samsung Partner to Accelerate RCS Business Messaging Based on the GSMA Universal Profile

Samsung and Google announced last week that they are collaborating to ensure that the Android Messages and Samsung Messages RCS clients will work seamlessly with both the Google Business Messages Platform and Samsung’s Messaging as a Platform (MaaP). The collaboration reinforces their joint commitment to the GSMA’s Universal Profile for Business Messaging (UP 2.0) and will mean that the messaging clients from either company will work with their respective devices.

Samsung and Google’s collaboration will help to accelerate the global adoption of RCS which is gaining momentum around the world with 57 global launches and 170 million monthly active users to date and which is expected to double by the end of the year. The GSMA has worked closely with the industry’s leading operators, vendors and service providers to shape RCS including the development of the UP. The UP aligned the industry behind a single, industry agreed set of features and technical enablers that has simplified the development and deployment of RCS. The GSMA recently released UP Version 2.2 which includes significant developments in the area of chatbots. Version 2.0 (July 2017) and Version 2.1 (December 2017), introduced key enablers for RCS Business Messaging as well as ‘conversational commerce’ features.

Google and Samsung’s collaboration has previously seen RCS included on a select number of Samsung devices, however, this new initiative will expand the partnership further by adding RCS features to existing mobile phones* starting with Samsung Galaxy S8 and S8+ but also adding S8 Active, S9, S9+, Note8, Note9, and select A and J series running Android 9.0. Their deployment of RCS technology will work with an operator’s selected technology provider to deliver Business Messaging and reinforce an open ecoystem. Each company will continue to develop their own messaging client for their devices in accordance with GSMA standards.

The GSMA has also created the GSMA RCS Business Messaging Labs to enable business messaging aggregators and technology partners to work with operators and platform developers to form a common understanding and ultimately deploy commercial launches. The Lab has been instrumental in encouraging the ecosystem to launch a number of trials which has resulted in numerous commercial campaigns. The Labs have also helped to ensure interoperability across RCS Business Messaging – in addition to the existing chat interoperability – helping the service to be used by many more users.

Google and Samsung were both present at Mobile World Congress Americas last week in Los Angeles demonstrating a number of examples of how brands are using RCS Business Messaging. Please go here for information on all Future Networks activities.

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