Google Messages on the Samsung Galaxy S21 gets a new One UI-inspired design

Verizon 5G on the Galaxy S21
Verizon 5G on the Galaxy S21 (Image credit: Hayato Huseman / Android Central)

What you need to know

  • Samsung and Google have redesigned the Google Messages app on the S21 to match the aesthetic of other One UI apps even more.
  • It's an extension of Google and Samsung's messaging partnership and adds a new spaced out home page to the app.
  • Reports from users place this as a server-side upgrade, so it should appear on your phone once Google flips the switch.

Samsung earlier this year launched the Galaxy S21 with 'native' Google Messages integration and a new One UI-inspired design. It's part of Google's push to expand RCS (Google's Chat service), and reposition Messages as an iMessage replacement on its most popular partner. Now, Google is redesigning the Messages app even more, making the home screen of Messages look a lot more like a One UI app (via XDA Developers. You'll get the large bold text header with all interactive parts of the app being positioned a little bit below that and within thumb's reach.

Google Messages One Ui

Source: Reddit (Image credit: Source: Reddit)

The update is rolling out worldwide to Galaxy S21 users (and only those, so far). It's not yet known whether Google and Samsung will roll this out to more of Samsung's cheapest phones like the A52 and A72. If Samsung is going to keep it on its flagship phone, however, then we can expect to see it on the S21 FE, Galaxy Z Fold 3, and the Galaxy Z Flip 3, at the very least. Google may also roll out a variation of this design to Android 12, given its current design stylings for the beta operating system.

Google's goals for working with Samsung on this are clear. The company has been trying to expand the reach of Google Messages for a while now, even stepping in to power RCS in places where operators were slow to take the reins. By leveraging its partnership with Samsung, the company can push RCS front and center to a wider variety of users than the Pixel or other stock Android using brands could reach on their own.

Have you gotten this new One UI-inspired Messages app? Let us know in the comments below.

Michael Allison