This week, Google reiterated that Messages with RCS is its primary communication service for consumers. Messages 3.9 is rolling out today with work on spam protection and more types of file sharing, including calendar and documents.

About APK Insight: In this ‘APK Insight’ post, we’ve decompiled the latest version of an application that Google uploaded to the Play Store. When we decompile these files (called APKs, in the case of Android apps), we’re able to see various lines of code within that hint at possible future features. Keep in mind that Google may or may not ever ship these features, and our interpretation of what they are may be imperfect. We’ll try to enable those that are closer to being finished, however, to show you how they’ll look in the case that they do ship. With that in mind, read on.

Spam protection

Like the Google Phone app, Messages is now working on spam protection that involves sending “some data about your messages” to Google for analysis. However, Google notes that it will not be reading the “content” of the text message.

<string name=”conversation_list_spam_popup_learn_more”>Learn more</string>

<string name=”conversation_list_spam_popup_negative”>Manage in Settings</string>

<string name=”conversation_list_spam_popup_paragraph”>To help protect against spam some data about your messages, but not any content, is sent to Google.</string>

<string name=”conversation_list_spam_popup_positive”>OK</string>

<string name=”conversation_list_spam_popup_title”>New! Spam protection</string>

Options to enable/disable spam protection will be available in settings.

<string name=”spam_detection_pref_key”>spam_detection_enabled</string>

<string name=”spam_detection_pref_title”>Enable spam protection</string>

<string name=”spam_preference_info_text”>To detect spam, some info about your messages is sent to Google without including the actual content or your phone number. Learn more

<string name=”spam_settings”>Spam protection</string>

<string name=”spam_settings_activity_title”>Spam protection</string>

<string name=”spam_settings_pref_key”>spam_settings</string>

Calendar and files sharing

After adding contact sharing, Messages 3.9 is working on sharing calendar events as a .vcs file.

<string name=”calendar_file_content_description”>Calendar file</string>

<string name=”vcs_file_extensions”>.vcs</string>

Meanwhile, sharing other file types is also in development, with a handful of icons found in Messages 3.9. This includes documents, spreadsheets, and presentations. A related change sees attachments be downloaded and saved rather than the existing action of sharing.

<string name=”unsupported_file_save_alert”>Save attachment to Downloads?</string>

<string name=”unsupported_file_save_cancel”>Cancel</string>

Messages 3.9

RCS Chat and dual-SIM

With Verizon beginning to roll out Universal Profile RCS for the Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL this week, new strings in Messages 3.9 make note of multi-SIM devices.

<string name=”conversation_list_fast_track_paragraph_experiment”>Agree to the %1$s and %2$s to turn on chat features from Google. Chat features use Wi‑Fi and data.</string>

<string name=”conversation_list_fast_track_paragraph_multi_sim_experiment”>Agree to the %1$s and %2$s to turn on chat features from Google on \”%3$s\” (SIM %4$d)</string>

<string name=”conversation_list_fast_track_tos_experiment”>Agree to the %1$s and %2$s to turn on chat features from Google</string>

How to update?

Messages 3.9 is rolling out now via the Play Store. We do not post APKs to download directly given the legal challenges associated with copyright and possibility of removal. Meanwhile, that model is perilous given Android App Bundles and Google Play’s Dynamic Delivery.

Thanks to JEB Decompiler, which some APK Insight teardowns benefit from.

Dylan contributed to this article

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Abner Li

Editor-in-chief. Interested in the minutiae of Google and Alphabet. Tips/talk: