May 26, 2022

Google Messages expands end-to-end encryption to group conversations

By Jay Bonggolto published 15 days ago

The security feature will be available in open beta for group chats later this year.

Google Messages Android Lifestyle

Google Messages (Image credit: Namerah Saud Fatmi / Android Central)

What you need to know

  • Google intends to roll out end-to-end encryption for group conversations in Messages.
  • The security feature for group chats will go live in late 2022.
  • Google Messages introduced the feature to individual chats in December 2020.

Google announced today at its I/O 2022 event that it is adding support for end-to-end encryption (E2EE) to group chats in the Messages app as part of an effort to improve its security for larger conversations.

In a blog post(opens in new tab), Google stated that E2EE would be available in group conversations later this year via an open beta. This means that nobody, including your carrier or Google, will be able to read the content of your group messages.

Today’s announcement comes more than a year after Google first unveiled E2EE in beta for individual chats(opens in new tab) before moving it to the stable channel last June. It is available to anyone who has access to RCS, the new messaging standard that Google is attempting to bring into the mainstream.Sponsored LinksOnline Job in USA from Pakistan. Salaries Might surprise youUSA Job from Home | Search Ads

“We have been working with carriers and phone makers around the world to upgrade SMS text messaging to a new standard called Rich Communication Services (RCS),” said Sameer Samat, vice president of product management for Android and Google Play. “With RCS, you can share high-quality photos, see type indicators, message over Wi-Fi, and get a better group messaging experience.”RECOMMENDED VIDEOS FOR YOU…CLOSEhttps://imasdk.googleapis.com/js/core/bridge3.517.2_en.html#goog_18977348200 seconds of 54 secondsVolume 0% PLAY SOUND

When a message is encrypted, it displays a lock icon next to the read receipt beneath it, as shown in the image below. It’s worth noting that not everyone you text may have access to RCS, so keep an eye out for the lock icon.

Google Messages E2EE
Google Messages E2EE (Image credit: Google)

With Google enabling E2EE for group chats, Messages will be on par with some of the best messaging apps(opens in new tab), such as WhatsApp. The messaging platform recently introduced Communities(opens in new tab) to let users bring all of their group chats together in one place, and Meta cited E2EE as one of the reasons for using the new feature.

Regardless of which messaging app you use, the implementation of E2EE for group conversations is a huge privacy win.

Jay Bonggolto

Jay Bonggolto 

News Writer

Jay Bonggolto always keeps a nose for news. He is a tech journalist based in the Philippines who has been writing about consumer tech for the past six years and has been using various Android phones since falling in love with Jelly Bean. When he’s not writing, he likes to spend time outside, stealing scenes with his phone camera.MORE ABOUT…Google Pixel 6 official cases are causing a headache for many ownersPlayStation Studios looking to expand with first-party on mobile, more live service g…LATESTThe Google app’s search suggestion UI gets a nifty redesign in new Android 13 beta

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