Will RCS "Save" Mobile Messaging or Boost Google Back into Messaging Platform Contention?
It remains to be seen whether Google’s support of Rich Communications Services (RCS), using Jibe, can create a big new role for Google in the messaging platform space. Also unclear is how well RCS will protect mobile operator revenues in messaging.
RCS currently represents 32 percent of the total carrier messaging revenue globally, according to ABI Research, increasing to 72 percent by 2021.
RCS global revenue is projected to grow from $23.6 billion in 2015 to $40.1 billion in 2021, not enough to halt a decline in service provider global messaging revenue, which will decline about four percent between 2016 and 2021, ABI Research projects.
To the extent that RCS succeeds, it will likely be driven by Android users, as iPhones do not support the standard natively, while most smartphones globally use Android. And “success” might be a matter of preventing further decline, not mobile operator revenue growth.