Google working on its own version of iMessage, BBM for Android?

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The SMS, or text message, is seeing its last days and I sure am glad. Google is reportedly working on its own version of iMessage or BBM for Android. This means users will be able to send text and multimedia messages to each other, globally, without incurring messaging costs from the carriers. If true, I’m thrilled that carriers will have to find new ways to gouge its customers for nickels and dimes.

VentureBeat reports:

For consumers, these new apps will offer faster and cheaper integrated ways to message friends. But the outlook is less rosy for carriers, who will likely see their lucrative text messaging revenue take a major dip. The messaging apps will move texting-like activity into cellular data networks and out of carrier’s aging SMS networks.

To date, the rate at which carriers charge for SMS plans, and even per-message rates, are astronomically high. A few years ago, the government inquired as to why SMS rates were so expensive, and the carriers really couldn’t come up with a viable excuse. But with apps like iMessage, BBM, Kik, WhatsApp and now possibly an Android version of the aforementioned apps, carriers won’t have to.

The Wall Street Journal says that for Android, Google “has also recently worked on a messaging application, a person familiar with the matter said.”

Additionally, with free messaging apps and numerous chat clients available on multiple smartphone platforms, more users are finding it easier to cut down on their messaging plans in favor of free alternatives. Some might even say that SMS is antiquated and annoying.

I, for one, can’t wait much longer for the death of the SMS. It served its purpose, and it still does when a carrier’s data network is down, but it’s time to move on. With AIM, GTalk, Facebook Chat, BBM, Kik, Skype and more handily available and free, paying even a penny per message makes absolutely no sense at all.

Like Phil, Bradley Cooper’s character in The Hangover, says in his voicemail greeting, “Leave me a message, or don’t. Oh, do me a favor and don’t text me. It’s gay.”

[Via: WSJ and VentureBeat]

  • http://twitter.com/androidhelpers Android Helpers

    Isn’t this called gTalk?

  • Molman

    “With AIM, GTalk, Facebook Chat, BBM, Kik, Skype and more handily available and free”

    None of these offer free messaging.  All these require a data plan to function, which will cost minimally $25 on my carrier.  A text messaging plan with 2500 outgoing, unlimited incoming can be had for $10.

    Which is cheaper?

    • http://twitter.com/androidhelpers Android Helpers

      Actually if you ran it cost per byte, the data plan comes out cheaper. 

  • http://twitter.com/Jay_A_ Jay

    The Android BBM or iMessage service is not going to replace SMS if it remains solely a service for Android. I currently use Android, but not all friends do. Some use BBM, some use iPhone. So sure, I’ll be able to message fellow Android users, but BlackBerry and iPhone users will remain off limits. SMS overcomes that problem. 

    • Anonymous

      Just a thought, anyone tried Whatsapp?? I know it works for all three platforms…

      • Somewhere

        I’ve used it.  Very poor app that you just can’t rely on.

      • Somewhere

        I’ve used it.  Very poor app that you just can’t rely on.

    • Anonymous

      Just a thought, anyone tried Whatsapp?? I know it works for all three platforms…

    • Anonymous

      Just a thought, anyone tried Whatsapp?? I know it works for all three platforms…

  • http://twitter.com/jmangotweets JMango

    Google already has a very familiar service to this and it’s called GTalk.  Now in order for it to compete against iMessage or BBM, Google has to start integrating it with it’s stock SMS app and add multimedia sharing features.

    It’s not a huge leap for Google so this should come pretty soon. A BBM/iMessage-like GTalk will be a force to reckon with if Google also makes it available with GTalk for GMail’s desktop version. 

  • John Mayson

    Does anyone in the US still pay for SMS? Every phone in our house now has unlimited SMS included in the cost. The problem with iMessage, BBM, etc. is it’s a walled garden requiring the recipient be on the same network. At least SMS is open and works the same the world over.

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