China Mobile will tomorrow launch become the first Chinese operator to launch rich communications suite (RCS) services nationwide.
The operator plans to launch RCS services under a new brand called 4G+Smart, the GSMA said.
RCS features offered under the brand will include group chat, high-resolution photo, file and location sharing and other common messaging application features that will now be available natively on compatible smartphones.
Compatible devices at launch will include the Samsung Galaxy S8 and the Huawei Mate 10. Huawei also plans to make its RCS service available as a downloadable app designed for the enterprise sector.
The GSMA said the launch by China Mobile, the world's largest operator by subscribers with over 885 million subscribers including 660 million 4G customers, will be a “huge boost for the adoption of RCS services.”
The industry group said China Mobile expects to transition to the GSMA's Universal Profile, a global cross-device messaging service backed by over 70 operators, vendors and operating system providers worldwide.
Momentum for RCS is growing with 50 launched networks and over 157 active monthly users. The GSMA predicts that there will be 350 million users by the end of next year and a billion by the first quarter of 2019.