A new version of the Google Messages app looks like it will use the Google Photos app to send videos instead of relying on older MMS tech that compresses videos so much that they become unwatchable.
Google has been working to solve this problem with RCS chatting over the last few years, but since iPhones and some other Android phones still don’t support this standard, the company has had to find a new way to provide decent quality video transfers.
The latest solution has been discovered by 9to5Google, and so far, all we know is that there’s a new section in the Google Messages app labelled ‘Google Photos’ with the subtext ‘Share sharper clarity video in text (SMS/MMS).’ Since Google Photos already has a link-based video/photo sharing scheme built into it, this update suggests that when you’re using a legacy text service, Google will send these links instead of a highly compressed video.
This is a bit of a weird workaround, but it will allow users to now send and receive video. However, when you do this, it basically means you’re uploading your video to Google Photos, and the other person will stream it or download it on their end. This is fine, but if you don’t have a data plan, you’ll be unable to do this without Wi-Fi.
As of the time of writing, the update isn’t live on my Google Pixel 4a 5G, but it will likely roll out at some point during the next few months.