After several companies and brands abused Google Messages’ RCS (Rich Communication Services) feature in India to bombard users with multiple ads without their consent, the tech company has decided to turn off RCS ads functionality in the country.
According to The Verge, Google has confirmed to disabled the feature in India.
“We are aware that some businesses are abusing our anti-spam policies to send promotional messages to users in India. We are disabling this feature in India while we work with the industry to improve the experience for users,” a company spokesperson said in a statement late on Wednesday.
Last month, multiple users took to social media platforms that RCS ads in Google Messages appear to be coming from “Verified Business” accounts and the frequency of such ads has picked up over the last few months in the country.
The users reported a deluge of ads, primarily related to personal loans, gambling companies and life insurance.
Multiple reports said that the problem has been around for about a year, and “complaints appear to be coming overwhelmingly from users based in India”.
“The trend initially blew up with Kotak Mahindra Bank, Bajaj Finserv, Buddy Loan, and PolicyBazaar have turned out to be the biggest offenders,” the reports claimed.
While several brands globally use messaging apps and SMS texts to advertise new products, these ads going on in India “are not necessarily the result of a user’s buying activity,” the reports noted.
The RCS upgrades SMS with branding, rich media, interactivity and analytics. With RCS, businesses can bring branded, interactive mobile experiences, right to the default messaging app.
According to Google, millions of businesses rely on SMS to communicate with mobile consumers.
RCS Business Messaging upgrades SMS with branding, rich media, interactivity, and analytics. With RCS, businesses can bring branded, interactive mobile experiences, right to the native Android messaging app.