I’m dreaming of a world where it is easy to use my mobile phone to connect with a brand wherever I am. No fuss, just picking it up and asking my question or doing whatever needs to be done. Just to be clear, I don’t contact the companies I do business with on a daily basis – usually only if there’s something wrong or if I need to update my address or upgrade my plan. The issue is that I have a life – like most customers – which means I usually can’t call between 9am and 4pm or, if I have a chance to make that call, I can’t wait for half an hour. Nor do I have the desire to download every app for every retailer, credit card company or insurance company just to connect with them once a year.
I’ve always assumed that it is a good thing that I’m one of those customers who don’t call for every little thing or just to talk to someone because I’m bored. So, why do I feel punished when I actually have an issue and need to connect with them? I would really prefer if there would be an easier way to work with businesses – big and small. I thought that messaging might be the holy grail for solving this problem. Turns out it did make things better, but not perfect. Now I have Facebook Messenger, Twitter, WhatsApp AND all the other apps to connect with organizations.
What is Rich Communication Services (RCS)?
In my journey of looking for alternatives, I heard about Rich Communication Services. Rich Communication Service, or RCS for short, is a carrier-enabled, text-based communication. It’s touted as the replacement for SMS and enables a variety of new features. Currently, RCS is still in its early stages and only available for specific phones or carriers. This is especially true of the business version, since it is not available through every carrier yet. However, companies like Google are working hard to get it to a point where everyone can use it – I can’t wait for this to happen!
How will it help me?
First of all, once readily available, RCS will be native to the phone’s default messaging app. (It’s the one app that allows me to connect with anyone.) RCS will enable not just simple back and forth messages, it will also show me suggested answers, so I won’t need to type as much. I’ll be able to easily send images, look at maps, schedule appointments and so much more; and – because it’s basically SMS on steroids – I will be able to receive push notifications to which I can respond. No more receiving an alert and then trying to call the company to figure out what’s next. I will simply continue on and solve the issue in ONE SINGLE CHANNEL. I’ll even pay for items, using whichever payment system I want, in that same channel.
I’m excited to follow the journey of Google and others as they sign up more carriers and more vendors. I envision a day when RCS Business Messaging allows all customers to use one messaging app to engage on the go and start and end a transaction without ever leaving this channel. A true dream come true!