Skip the wait: Enable RCS right now in Google Messages for any carrier

Skip the wait: Enable RCS right now in Google Messages for any carrier

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As we all know, the messaging situation on Android is a bit of a mess…at least in the United States. While most of us in the U.S. still use SMS, the rest of the world has shifted to better messaging services like WhatsApp or Telegram. It’s not easy to convince your friends and family to switch to a new chat app, so a lot of power users in the U.S. are banking on the SMS to RCS transition to improve the messaging situation. Despite Google’s best efforts, the company has only managed to enable RCS for all users in the UK and France, two markets where it’s not as desired. Thanks to a couple of Redditors, there’s now a way to force enable RCS on any carrier or device, provided you’re using Google’s Messages app.

Redditors /u/sh0ch, /u/LinkofHyrule, and /u/NashRadical collectively shared a method on how to enable RCS over on the /r/UniversalProfile subreddit earlier today. The method is quite simple, and I can confirm it works on my own Google Pixel 4 operating on T-Mobile USA. It also worked for XDA Contributor Max Weinbach on his Samsung Galaxy Fold operating on T-Mobile. We were able to start a messaging session with read receipts, typing indicators, and all the other Chat features.

Here’s all you need to do to get this working:

Requirements:

Steps:

  1. Turn off WiFi.
  2. Open the Activity Launcher app.
  3. Tap the dropdown up top and switch from “recent activities” to “all activities.”
  4. Scroll down to find “Messages.”
  5. Tap on it and find the “Set RCS Flags” activity. Select it to open the hidden RCS configuration settings in Google Messages.
  6. Select the dropdown under “ACS Url” and select the ‘http://rcs-acs-prod-us.sandbox.google.com/’ option.
  7. Go home and clear Messages from your recent apps list. Open it back up and you should see a message at the bottom asking you to set up Chat. Accept it by tapping on “upgrade now.”
  8. After starting setup, re-enable WiFi and wait a few minutes. If successful, go to Settings > Chat features and it should say “Status: Connected” up top.

Troubleshooting:

If that didn’t work for you, then try these additional steps:

  1. Go to Settings > Apps and find “Carrier Services.” It’s a system app, so you’ll need to tap on the overflow menu and select “show system apps.” Once you find it, clear data on the app.
  2. In Settings > Apps, find Messages and force stop it.
  3. Repeat steps #1-6 from above, but while you’re in the RCS configuration settings, expand the OTP Pattern dropdown and select ‘Your\sMessenger\sverification\scode\sis\sG-(\d{6}).’

I had to follow these last 3 steps to get it working on my own device, personally. A ton of people have already reported success following these steps. Perhaps Google is getting ready for a broader rollout of RCS after the recent announcement from the 4 major U.S. carriers.