Earlier in the day, our friends from AndroidPolice got hold of Google Messages 6.2.031 and downloaded it from APKMirror. Our friend Quinny899 informed us that this APK is actually a dogfood version, which means that it was not supposed to be made public. Sometimes these dogfood versions have a lot of interesting code for features in development, and Messages 6.2.031 is certainly one of those cases. This dogfood construction suggests that Google is preparing end-to-end encryption for RCS messages, Google Fi account integration to synchronize calls, texts and voice messages, and manual restores to the cloud for backups.
End-to-end encryption for RCS
RCS is widely regarded as the successor to SMS. With RCS, users can exchange high-quality media files, view play receipts, view keystrokes, start group chats and do more on mobile data and even Wi-Fi. Rather than waiting As operators adopt the RCS protocol themselves, Google has started rolling out RCS support in the Google Messages app for everyone in the UK and France. They then rolled out RCS support in the Messages app for people in the United States, Spain, Italy, Singapore, Portugal, Argentina, Pakistan, Poland, and Turkey.
One of the features that popular messaging apps like WhatsApp and Telegram support, but RCS isn’t end-to-end encryption, but it looks like Google is gearing up to add support this way to their own chef. The biggest new feature under development in Google Messages 6.2.031 is “Enriched end-to-end encrypted communications service message[s]. “Depending on the channels, you will be able to send messages with end-to-end encryption or, if your data connection is poor, without encryption by falling back to SMS / MMS.
Chatting end-to-end encrypted with %s Resend as chat End-to-End Encrypted Rich Communication Service message "SMS/MMS texts aren't end-to-end encrypted. To send with end-to-end encryption, wait for improved data connection or send messages now as SMS/MMS." Send unencrypted Wait Send unencrypted messages? "SMS/MMS texts aren't end-to-end encrypted. To send with end-to-end encryption, wait until %1$s has data connection or send messages now as SMS/MMS." This message is still trying to be sent end-to-end encrypted to the recipient. You can also send the message as SMS/MMS instead.
You can even send your location via an encrypted end-to-end message:
Send end-to-end encrypted message with selected location %1$s
Finally, it seems that you will be able to choose whether other applications can access your encrypted messages from start to finish. However, third-party application developers are currently unable to implement RCS support in their messaging applications.
Let other apps access end-to-end encrypted messages
Google Fi integration
Another new feature that many users are eagerly awaiting is the integration of Google Fi. Although Google Hangouts is about to disappear, it is still recommended for users who want to see and answer their calls, texts and voice messages on multiple devices. However, that may soon change, as Google Messages is preparing to take over.
The settings page above, once online for all users, will allow Google Fi subscribers to log into their accounts to synchronize any text, call or voice message they have on the screens. Google Messages has had a web application for almost 2 years now, so this is probably where Google Fi users will be able to read and reply to their texts.
When you sign in to your Google Fi account in Google Messages, you have the option to transfer your Hangouts conversation history to Messages. Unfortunately, you will not be able to synchronize messages or voice calls with a computer if you activate RCS in Message. If you turn off multi-device synchronization in the settings, you will also not be able to access voice calls and messages on the web, but you will be able to continue sending text messages from the web.
Google Fi Channels
Cancel "You're already signed in from the primary phone for your Google Account. To replace your primary phone with this one, continue signing in." Cancel Sign in "You're signing in on a different phone" Cancel "Before Hangouts SMS/MMS stops working, transfer your conversation histories to Messages %1$s" Transfer conversations Enjoy texts, calls & voicemail on the web even when your phone is off Conversations stay synced & secure on Google servers Hangouts SMS/MMS is going away Sync conversations Text or call on the web while your phone is off Messages stores your information securely on Google servers Your conversations stay synced across screens Sync your conversations to enjoy texts, calls & voicemail on the web Wrong account. Sign in with your Google Fi account. fi_account_login Sync texts, calls & voicemails across screens Sign in to Google Fi fi_account Stop sync & sign out To get messaging & voice calls on your computer, turn off chat features. %1$s Cancel Turn off Using chat features? Failed to validate Google Fi account fi_current_sync fi_enable_download_over_wifi Also delete synced conversations? Keep Cancel Delete If you delete synced conversations, they’ll be available only on your phone Unpaired devices Pair phone & computer Status: %1$s Status: Loading You’ll be able to text from your phone and computer, but calls and voicemail won’t be available on the web Cancel Stop syncing Stop syncing messages, calls & voicemail across screens? Some video & images will not be available across all devices when Wi-Fi is off Sync media only over Wi-Fi Can’t stop sync & sign out right now. Try again later. Stopping sync and signing out. Messages, calls & voicemail stay current across screens Sync complete Sync in progress Google Fi
Finally, two layout files have been added hinting at a new settings page for restoring messages saved in the cloud: restore_activity_layout.xml and restore_fragment_layout.xml. The backup service in Google Play services, as well as the backup service in Google One, can back up and restore your messages when you first connect to a new device. It looks like Google Messages will allow you to choose to manually restore a previous backup of your conversations.
Backup detected Last backup Restore Restore your previous backup. Backups will discontinue from occuring on any of your other devices. Skip restore This option will delete your existing cloud backup, then backup chats from this device. Cancel Continue
You can download the latest version of the Google Messages app from the Google Play Store link below. Note however that version 6.2.031 of the dogfood version will not be available via Google Play and can only be downloaded via APKMirror.
Thanks to PNF Software for providing us with a license to use JEB Decompiler, a professional quality reverse engineering tool for Android applications.
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