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Please disable RCS before switching to a new phone

two telephones, one with RCS

RCS is the updated version of SMS available on many Android devices today. However, it is still not universal and that can cause some problems. If you switch phones, you may want to disable RCS first.

Like many things related to Android, the RCS situation is a bit messy. To take advantage of RCS features, you must first use Google̵

7;s Messages app. There are tons of great third-party text messaging apps on the Play Store, but only Google’s app can use RCS.

Even if you’re using Google’s Messages app, your carrier can get in the way of RCS. Google is working hard to get around that, but it’s still an obstacle for some devices.

The last messy bit has nothing to do with Android, but it prevents RCS from being a truly universal standard. iPhones don’t support RCS at all. They use their own standard called iMessage.

Speaking of iMessage, you may have heard that iPhone users are having trouble receiving text messages after switching to Android devices. What happens is messages keep getting sent to the old iMessage account instead of the new phone. Something similar can happen with RCS.

RELATED: How to turn off and deactivate iMessage on iPhone or iPad

If you’re using RCS and you switch to a device that doesn’t support it (like an iPhone), you may not receive text messages on your new phone. Fortunately, Google says this will take up to eight days, but that’s a long time. There are a number of ways you can prevent this.

First, you can check if you’re even using RCS to begin with. As mentioned earlier, you should be using Google’s Messages app. From there, open the Settings menu and search for ‘Chat features’.

select chat features

If you see “Chat Features”, it means your device supports RCS. Open the “Chat Features” menu and make sure it is enabled.

RCS is enabled
When this switch is on, you were using RCS.

Just toggle the switch to turn off RCS. You can now switch to the new device without worry. If you’ve already switched devices, Google has a web tool that can sign out your number. It’s a simple process that we’ve outlined in a separate guide.

RELATED: How to Unlink Your Phone Number from RCS on Android

If you know that your new phone supports RCS and you plan to use the Messages app, don’t worry about this. But keep the RCS feature in mind if you ever plan on switching from Android to iPhone, or any device you’re not sure about.

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