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Apple’s last laugh? Green bubbles to stay despite RCS adoption

Apple caving into adopting the RCS messaging standard for iPhone to Android text conversations doesn’t mean the fabled green bubbles are going anywhere.

While confirming that the RCS Universal Profile will be replace SMS and MMS messages for cross-platform conversations in 2024, Apple also said those texts will be represented by green bubbles in chat threads.

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The blue bubbles, long considered a class system by critics of Apple’s policies, will still be reserved for iMessage conversations between Apple users.

Apple confirmed the decision to 9to5Mac reporter Chance Miller. He wrote:

“Apple has confirmed to me that blue bubbles will still be used to represent iMessages, while green bubbles will represent RCS messages. The company uses blue bubbles to denote what it believes is the best and most secure way for iPhone users to communicate, which is iMessage.”


There’s still plenty of advantages for those exchanging messages across the operating system divide.

The adoption of RCS will finally mean iPhone and Android users will be able to exchange high resolution photos and videos – which are almost unwatchable when sent via MMS – and will see long-requested features like live typing indicators and read receipts.

The security of RCS is also greatly improved compared to SMS/MMS, but Apple still believes iMessage is the better security option due to end-to-end encryption and the advanced data protection offered via iCloud.

While this is a net plus for mobile users overall, it certainly doesn’t represent Apple opening up iMessage. Still, it will keep the competition regulators at bay, and will satisfy Google and Samsung who have been vocal campaigners for change.

Still, that green bubble, eh lads?

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