The first time I was texting with a friend and got a message informing me that they “liked” my message, I was wondering if Facebook had somehow invaded SMS. The second time I realized that this is what happens when someone with an Android phone (me) is in a text exchange with someone using iMessage on an iPhone (like my friend was).
While I’m no longer confused, it can be a little messy when your text messages are littered with text responses for what were meant to be simple reactions. Soon that may be a thing of the past… for some Android users anyway. An update to Google Message is starting to roll out which can translate iMessage reactions to RCS emoji.
As spotted recently by 9to5Google, the code for the latest beta version of the Google Messages app includes the ability to classify reaction messages sent from iOS devices and then show them as emoji on an Android device.
Some users have started to see this in action on their devices, and @jvolkman sent 9to5Google some screenshots showing that likes, loves, and dislikes were all translated into emoji that were applied to the incoming messages rather than shown as separate messages.
If an iMessage user changes the reaction, that change should also be reflected in the Google Messages app. And tapping on a message will bring up a notification letting you know that the reaction has been “translated from iPhone.”
Of course, this will only help Android users who are using the Google Messages app for SMS. Some Android phone makers like Samsung have their own default SMS apps, although most phones will allow you to switch to Google Messages or another text messaging app.