Messages, the renamed Android Messages, has seen a few interesting changes in the past months. A new Material UI, a dark mode, and an overhauled search experience have rolled out to the app, and although today's update may not seem as groundbreaking, it's certainly quite useful as it finally lets you share contacts.

The changelog mentions sharing and adding contacts, which is new, as well as the automatic previews feature that rolled out with Messages 3.6. However, back then, the previews weren't working and right now they are, so it seems like the setting showed up prematurely and the feature is fully functional now.

WHAT'S NEW
• Add and share contacts more easily from within the app.
• See previews of links shared by unknown senders and high-quality previews of images you send.

Share contacts

On Messages 3.7, when you tap the attachment button to append something to your text, you can scroll down among the options and find a new contact sharing row between location and voice. Tap it and you're taken to a screen where you can select the contact to share. Only one can be chosen at a time, so you'll have to go through the steps one-by-one to add more contacts. It also doesn't seem like you can select which numbers to share if a person has many, all of them will be sent together.

Every contact will show up as a small card attached to the message — you can tap the x button to remove it. Once done, send your message and the recipient will get the person's name and phone numbers. They can easily save them then.

Automatic previews

The setting for Automatic previews appeared in version 3.6 of Messages, but it wasn't working correctly. With this new version, the previews are showing up. I tested the same links that weren't displaying properly last time and they now do, both on the sender and recipient's end.

Left: Messages 3.6. Right: Messages 3.7. 

Smart Reply is gone

One other change we've noticed in Messages 3.7 is that the Smart Reply feature appears to be gone. It's no longer in the app's settings and smart replies aren't showing up below received messages. We're not sure if this is an oversight, a temporary result of a bug, or if it's here to stay. The support page for Messages still mentions suggested replies, so there's a little hope that the option hasn't been scrapped for good.

Left: Messages 3.6. Right: Messages 3.7. 

Smart Reply is back in v3.7.052 of Messages.

Download

Version 3.7.049 of Messages is already rolling out on the Play Store, but you can grab it from APK Mirror if you'd rather sideload it right now.

Messages
Messages
Developer: Google LLC
Price: Free