Google confirms blocking RCS functionality in Messages on rooted Android devices

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Google is blocking RCS (Rich Communication Services) on rooted or bootloader-unlocked Android devices, as reported by 9to5Google.

Users on a Reddit thread have shared that RCS is not functioning properly on their rooted phones, with some experiencing issues since late 2023.

RCS unavailable on rooted devices using Google Messages

Despite the Messages app indicating a successful connection to RCS, users are unable to send or receive RCS messages on their rooted devices. This issue has been prevalent since late November, with intermittent reports continuing to surface.

Some users have reported instances of texts disappearing after pressing the send button, with no error messages displayed in the Messages app to indicate that RCS is not functioning due to rooting.

Google is also restricting bootloader-unlocked devices from using RCS to prevent spam and ensure compliance with RCS’ “operating measures,” confirmed by 9to5Google.

Rooted phones should revert to SMS/MMS when RCS is unavailable, but some users report this failing for existing conversations, missing texts sent by others.

According to Mishaal Rahman, Google is implementing Play Integrity API “attestation checks” specifically on the Messages app, which could be causing the blocking of RCS on rooted devices.

In response to concerns raised by users, a Google spokesperson stated to Android Central that blocking RCS features on rooted devices is part of its efforts to combat spam and fraud. The company continues to update its spam-fighting tactics to stay ahead of spammers who adapt their methods.

Rooted phones often face compatibility issues with apps like Google Wallet and banking apps, failing the Play Integrity API test and receiving warnings from Google about unsupported devices.

While Google’s actions aim to combat spam, the decision to block a core communication feature on rooted devices raises concerns among users.

Source 1, 2, 3

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