China Mobile has announced that it is the first Chinese operator to commercially launch RCS services to subscribers across the country from 1st December with the aim of enhancing the communications capabilities of its subscribers.
China Mobile joins Axiata, AT&T, Bell, Deutsche Telekom, Jio, Orange, MTS, Telenor, Telstra, T-Mobile, Sprint, Rogers and Vodafone who have already launched RCS services.
Launching under a new brand called ‘4G+Smart’, the move will give users access to enhanced features including group chat, high-res photo sharing, file-sharing, location sharing and read receipts that are familiar on many messaging applications but will now be available natively on people’s smartphones without needing to download any apps. It will be available on a number of compatible devices including the Samsung S8 and Huawei Mate 10.
China Mobile’s RCS service is available both natively and as a downloadable app. The native client is designed for the mass consumer market, while the app, which is called ‘And Fei Xin’ focuses more on the enterprise space.
In 2015, China Mobile partnered with ZTE to start the development and to trial RCS to rival other OTT services such as Tencent’s WeChat service.