We are beginning to see the genius of former BlackBerry CEO, Jim Balsillie, come to life. No, he isn’t working with T-Mobile. However, for years Balsillie tried to work with carriers for an “SMS 2.0” that would build the text-messaging standard on top of BBM. Sadly, it never came to fruition and thus gave rise to the popularity for other instant messengers like iMessage, WhatsApp, and more. Today, you could argue T-Mobile has encompassed the “SMS 2.0” idea with their latest initiative.

T-Mobile today announced “Advanced Messaging” for the carrier. The new advanced messaging is built on a standard called Rich Communications Services (RCS). This will extend to new features of SMS, closely matching it with third-party IM clients.

Advanced Messaging comes with a range of new messaging enhancements:

  • Rich 1 on 1 and group messaging, including near real-time chat
  • See when others are typing, when your message is delivered and even read
  • Share high-res photos and videos up to 10 MB just as you would a regular text message

T-Mobile Advanced Messaging is built to work across all devices, makers and operating systems—and wireless operators. No additional app is required, the new features will work right out of the box.

“The new Samsung Galaxy Grand Prime, available in T-Mobile stores and online today, is the first device to come with T-Mobile Advanced Messaging built in—and you’ll be able to get it next on the Galaxy S5 and S6 through simple software updates. Nearly a dozen more hot devices will come with Advanced Messaging this year alone, and, in the future, we expect it will be a standard feature on new smartphones sold,” said Neville Ray, Chief Technology Officer at T-Mobile.

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