Google calls the iPhone 'outdated' for refusing RCS messaging

Google's new fictional "iPager" reveal, part of its #GetTheMessage campaign.
(Image credit: Android / YouTube)

What you need to know

  • Google's latest push for Apple to adopt RCS continues with the "iPager," a device that's just as "outdated" as the iPhone's SMS messaging standard.
  • The company highlights the many limitations of SMS/MMS, such as a lack of encryption, terrible video/picture quality, and broken group chats.
  • Google launched the #GetTheMessage campaign a year ago, and though Apple has remained against it, an EU investigation could turn that around.

Google's latest attempt at pushing Apple to adopt RCS messaging into its iPhone series has crossed a new threshold.

The company, through its Android YouTube channel, published a video debuting the "iPager." While the product isn't real, Google's #GetTheMessage campaign is, and this is the brand's latest entry for a more compatible texting future between iPhones and Android devices.

In the video, Google kes fun at Apple, saying the iPhone is "outdated" with its usage of SMS/MMS texting as it comes with its own set of problems.

A lack of end-to-end encryption (E2EE) followed by pixelated pictures and videos are byproducts of the separation between RCS messages and the old SMS standard. Additionally, those texting in groups face broken chats, and there's the ever-classic green and bubble controversy.

RCS not only corrects many of those faults but adds read receipts, typing indicators, and the ability to text over Wi-Fi. As Google noted when it first started the "Get the Message" campaign a year ago, the upgrades RCS brings benefit both Android and iOS devices.

Users can share the campaign's latest video on social media or visit its official page to find a direct link to Apple's X page in an attempt to make their voices heard.

Despite this campaign going on for a year now, Apple's Tim Cook has remained relatively against the idea of RCS on the iPhone. In his mind, if anyone is experiencing problems with texting, they should get an iPhone.

We're currently at a standstill in the push for Apple to adopt RCS messaging, though. The EU recently labeled six large tech companies as "gatekeepers" under its Digital Markets Act — an act designed to encourage healthier competition between companies. In doing so, Apple's iMessage was not listed among the products (or services) a gatekeeper has that warrants that label.

That decision lets Apple off the hook when it comes to RCS adoption — for now. The EU is launching an investigation into the matter, and if it feels iMessage does fall within gatekeeper status, Apple will eventually have to open up iMessage and adopt RCS into its default texting service by August 2024.

The investigation is expected to run for about five months before we know whether or not Apple will have to comply and adopt RCS, much like its recent adoption of the USB-C charging port on the iPhone 15 series.

Nickolas Diaz
News Writer

Nickolas is always excited about tech and getting his hands on it. Writing for him can vary from delivering the latest tech story to scribbling in his journal. When Nickolas isn't hitting a story, he's often grinding away at a game or chilling with a book in his hand.