According to reports, businesses in India have been increasingly misusing Rich Communication Services (RCS) to deliver ads and other promotional messages throughout the last couple of months. User reports indicate that users have been receiving several advertisements daily via the Google Messages app. Often, the senders are labeled as “Verified Business” in the app itself. Google India has finally decided to address this controversy and acknowledge the issue.
A Google spokesperson has clarified that businesses that use RCS to deliver ads are in direct violation of the company’s policies.
We are aware that some businesses are abusing our anti-spam policies to send promotional messages to users in India. We are disabling this feature in India while we work with the industry to improve the experience for users.
This decision by Google India to completely disable RCS Business Messaging is unprecedented. Though the feature is globally available, nowhere else has RCS been exploited to this extent.
There has been no clear answer to exactly how Google intends to tackle the issue of unsolicited marketing messages through abusing RCS. However, because businesses in India need to use the Jibe cloud platform to relay their messages, the tech giant may have some leverage that they can use to prevent the misuse of the RCS feature. Additionally, it is also plausible that the default Google Messages app on Android will be receiving an update to its spam detection feature.
This move by Google is going to provide a temporary respite to users of the Google Messages app. Users of the Google Messages app in India can once again enable RCS without fretting over getting spammed by unsolicited promotional messages.