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Google Messages

24

Google Messages tests convenient microphone button for voice messages

With Allo shuttered, Google has decided to focus its messaging efforts on Messages and RCS (for the time being, at least). Since Google Messages was originally meant as a simple SMS app, the company has had to do a fair bit of work to make it a true competitor against established players like WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger. To reach feature parity with them, Messages is testing the addition of an instantly accessible microphone button to help you communicate via voice more easily.

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25

Messages 4.7 lets you batch-delete individual messages in chats [APK Download]

Work on the Messages app, Google's messaging platform du jour, continues. After adding RCS, Assistant, a web client, and several other enhancements, the latest Messages update isn't groundbreaking but it does bring one feature that should have been there already: multi-select for individual messages.

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83

Google Messages RCS spotted going live on Simple Mobile, Visible, and Xfinity Mobile

Google chose RCS as the next holy grail of messaging after it shut down Allo and abandoned Hangouts. However, since the Rich Communication Services depend on the mercy of carriers and their specific device support, rollout has been exorbitantly slow, which even lead Google to take the reins and push out RCS in France and the UK using the Messages app (with more markets to follow). In the US, though, that's not the case so far. But perhaps Google calling the carriers' bluff is working, as Simple Mobile, Visible, and Xfinity Mobile are starting to support the new protocol.

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36

Google Messages could soon remind you to reply to that text you forgot about

We've all received a text in the middle of a critical task we can't interrupt, but most of us often forget to reply to that message when we're finally able to. Google Messages might soon make it easier to remember you had to respond to your friend, thanks to an option right in the notification card.

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24

Google Messages v4.4 prepares reminder notifications and federated learning, expands Assistant to attachments [APK Teardown]

As we continue to wait for things like proper spam blocking and true universal RCS support for everybody, we can still look to Google Messages to bring some new features. The latest update is testing a new Assistant integration in the attachments screen, and a teardown shows that Federated Learning is growing beyond its starting point in Gboard. There's also a hint about a reminder notification that could help us deal with messages a little more efficiently.

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168

Messages starts showing the status of your RCS connection

It's been a couple of years since Messages (then known as Google Messenger) started rolling out RCS, the chat-like features that work on top of regular SMS. In the time since, RCS has spread to more operators and devices, but it's still not the universal solution Google wants it to be, and nor is it a foolproof one. To help users understand what's going on, especially when things don't work as intended, Messages now shows you the status of your RCS connection.

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26

Assistant's context-aware recommendations are live for some in Messages 4.4 [APK Download]

After Google killed Allo, users lost the ability to get Assistant suggestions directly in their conversation feeds, but the company confirmed it would bring the star feature to Messages soon. Three months later, the integration is finally live, and Google's digital helper now pops up with recommendations based on your discussions.

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13

Google Messages is suggesting GIF searches based on your conversations

Support for Tenor GIFs was recently added to Google's SMS messaging app, allowing you to easily add a GIF into your chats by tapping on the + and then 'GIF search.' Google really wants to encourage you to use this, it seems, as it's now offering suggestions for GIF searches based on your conversations.

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45

Google Messages v4.3 prepares auto-reply for spam and RCS settings, continues Verified SMS and Assistant integration [APK Teardown]

The latest update to Google Messages is out and sporting much the same look as always. The major notes to be seen are in the teardown, which brings a few smaller details related to RCS settings and Verified SMS, hints at an auto-reply feature for spam messages, a change to the audio clip recorder, and a little refocusing on the upcoming Google Assistant integration.

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77

[Update: Tenor support] Google Messages v4.2 now supports attachments of any type, adds Verified SMS details [APK Teardown]

Google Messages just received its 4.2 update today as it adds a subtle but potentially valuable feature: Sending generic file types. Yes, you can now send files without being limited to just the standard photo and video collection. A teardown also brings follow-ups to the topics of Verified SMS and Google Assistant integration.

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