Last October, a trick to enable RCS in the Messages app on any Android phone emerged. Google today announced that it will be killing “unsupported workarounds” by the end of February.

In addition to enabling Rich Communication Services (RCS) on any device, the trick worked regardless of carrier. This worldwide access to Google’s RCS implementation allowed all Messages users to experience typing indicators, read receipts, high-resolution photos, sending over Wi-Fi and mobile data, larger group conversations, and other features.

This afternoon, Google announced in the Messages Help forum (via Android Police) that “users who have gotten chat features through unsupported workarounds where chat features aren’t available yet will see them disabled by the end of February.” The company is specifically referring to users that are not in the US, Mexico, UK, or France that leveraged the RCS trick.

Google notes how “chat features will be disabled for all versions of the app, including older versions” in a wide crackdown. However, today’s “update” does hint at wider availability, with Google saying how killing the Messages RCS trick comes as it “prepare[s] to bring chat features to more regions.”

We continue to work on bringing chat features to more regions around the world as soon as possible. Click here for additional resources on chat features provided by Google, including information on where they are supported.

This implementation involves Google directly “upgrading messaging” instead of waiting for carriers. Last November, the company preempted the the Cross-Carrier Messaging Initiative (CCMI) of AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile, and Verizon by launching RCS in the US.

More about RCS:

FTC: We use income earning auto affiliate links. More.

Check out 9to5Google on YouTube for more news:

You’re reading 9to5Google — experts who break news about Google and its surrounding ecosystem, day after day. Be sure to check out our homepage for all the latest news, and follow 9to5Google on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn to stay in the loop. Don’t know where to start? Check out our exclusive stories, reviews, how-tos, and subscribe to our YouTube channel

About the Author

Abner Li

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