Rich Communication Services (RCS)

Rich communication services (RCS) is a mobile messaging approach in which session initiation protocol (SIP) and hypertext transfer protocol (HTTP) support the sending of rich features, such as higher-resolution images, videos, and GIFs. 

These rich features can be sent through native carrier-based messaging software because of built-in RCS functionality. This approach offers a greater level of mobile messaging flexibility compared to SMS. Previously, this level of mobile messaging customizability was only available through third-party applications like Slack and WhatsApp.


Portions of this definition originally appeared on Enterprise Networking Planet and are excerpted here with permission.


What Are the Features of Rich Communication Messaging?

Some of the features added or enhanced by RCS-enabled devices include:

  • Rich text, like action buttons and read receipts, is more action-oriented and user experience-focused.
  • Rich imagery and videos offer enhanced image and video quality as well as features like viewable video thumbnails in message threads.
  • Branding elements like logos and imagery, calls-to-action (CTAs), and some secure sharing features are designed specifically for vendor-to-customer relationship building.
  • Location and map features allow location tracking and sharing, sometimes with visualizations.
  • Integrations for user actions allow users to do tasks like appointment scheduling and payments directly from a message in a single app.
  • Collaboration and file sharing let users share files and augment in-message collaboration opportunities, which are unavailable in traditional messaging.

What Is RCS Business Messaging (RBM)?

RCS business messaging refers to the ways RCS can be applied to business use cases. Some of these include more interactive customer interactions, package tracking for delivery, meeting scheduling, payment notifications, and improved customer experience. In addition, businesses can use RBM to find and review customer engagement and communication analytics.

What Are the Benefits of RCS?

RCS can offer several key benefits, including:

  • Branded customer conversations: Users can more easily recognize and trust that messages are coming from specific businesses through their branding.
  • CTA opportunities: Users can easily see and respond to CTAs from their main messaging inbox.
  • Collaboration and groups: RCS offers group settings and customizable notifications, which can improve collaboration with users who appreciate not having to download another app.
  • Less frustrating UI: Users like RCS because they don’t need to use another app or website to engage with a particular business.

Read next: Best Enterprise VoIP Providers

Shelby Hiter
Shelby Hiter
Shelby Hiter is a writer with more than five years of experience in writing and editing, focusing on healthcare, technology, data, enterprise IT, and technology marketing. She currently writes for four different digital publications in the technology industry: Datamation, Enterprise Networking Planet, CIO Insight, and Webopedia. When she’s not writing, Shelby loves finding group trivia events with friends, cross stitching decorations for her home, reading too many novels, and turning her puppy into a social media influencer.

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