Found in Allo, Gmail, and Inbox, Smart Reply is a convenient time saver that suggests responses based on the context of a conversation. Today, the feature is rolling out to Project Fi subscribers who use Android Messages.
Currently, Project Fi subscribers can either use Hangouts or Android Messages as their default SMS app. The latter is Google’s official SMS and RCS client that is increasingly being preloaded by many Android OEMs, most recently Huawei.
It also gets more frequent updates given that Hangouts is transitioning to an enterprise messaging service in the near future. As such, Smart Reply coming only to Android Messages makes sense, but will definitely inconvenience some Project Fi users.
Smart Replies appear as chips underneath a previously received message and just above the text field. There are usually three suggestions based on a machine learning analysis of the previous message, with replies coming in both text and emoji form.
Last year, there were some reports of Smart Replies already rolling out to the app via a server-side update. However, today’s announcement by Project Fi makes it official for users of the Google MVNO. Google notes that the rollout is starting today.