Google Duo logo on a phoneSource: Chris Wedel/Android Central

What you need to know

  • Google and Samsung are seemingly collaborating on tighter integration between their apps.
  • A report from South Korea, as well as an examination of the Samsung Messages app, reveals One UI users could soon use Duo video calling from within the SMS app.
  • A partnership with carriers and the use of RCS may even help bypass data charges.

Samsung Messages, RCS, and Google Duo. What happens when you combine the default SMS app on the majority of Android phones sold today with the next big thing in messaging and possibly the best video calling app on Android? Something really awesome, we hope, because that's what Samsung and Google are working on.

A report from The Korea Herald suggests Samsung is looking to integrate its Messages app with Google Duo and allow future One UI users to call each other directly via Google's awesome video calling app. An app breakdown by 9to5Google reveals the same and goes into more detail about what the end product might look like.

Google Duo integration in Samsung MessagesSource: 9to5Google

A mockup based on the code teardown shows the Google Duo icon will be situated right next to the call icon in Samsung Messages, as per the current state of the app's code. This would allow a user to directly start a video call with the number they are texting with.

How does RCS come into the mix? Well, according to The Korean Herald, the third part of this messaging triumvirate is Korean mobile carrier provider SK Telecom, which will allow for video chats of up to 5MB to be free of cost via RCS.

Due to SK Telecom's involvement, however, it's unclear if the Google Duo/Samsung Messages integration will go beyond South Korea or how it might work in countries where RCS is not yet available. Hopefully, it won't be as much of a hindrance as we fear it could be.

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