iOS 18 RCS Support Now in Beta

With the release of iOS 18’s second beta yesterday, Apple included an RCS toggle, though RCS messaging was initially non-functional. However, according to reports from iOS 18 users, RCS support now seems to be rolling out.

Some iOS 18 testers have confirmed they can send RCS messages to Android users, with RCS features active. RCS-based texts are marked with an RCS label.

Y’all…! — Snazzy Labs (@SnazzyLabs) June 25, 2024

RCS (Rich Communication Services) enables iPhone and Android users to exchange higher quality photos and videos, audio messages, and larger file sizes. It also supports features like read receipts and real-time typing indicators. Here’s what’s new:

  • Higher resolution photos and videos.
  • Larger file sizes and file sharing.
  • Audio messages.
  • Cross-platform emoji reactions.
  • Real-time typing indicators.
  • Read receipts.
  • Messaging over cellular or Wi-Fi (unlike SMS, which is cellular only). RCS messages sent over Wi-Fi are free.
  • Improved group chats.

RCS messages can be enabled in the Messages section of the Settings app and are on by default. Currently, RCS messaging is available only in the United States for those with a carrier that supports RCS. T-Mobile, AT&T, and Verizon users running iOS 18 should have the RCS toggle available, but those with MVNOs and smaller carriers cannot use the feature yet.

Not all iOS 18 users with T-Mobile, AT&T, and Verizon have RCS enabled, indicating that support is still rolling out.

iOS 18 is currently in beta for developers, with RCS becoming available to all iOS 18 users when the software launches to the public this fall.