Google Messages might handle iMessage reactions


  • In Google Messages, iMessage reactions from iPhones come in as text messages.
  • A future update to Messages could fix this annoying incompatibility.
  • It’s not known how this will exactly work, but we expect Emoji reactions to come in place of “Liked an image” text.

Because of this, iPhone users who use the reactions feature within iMessage end up sending full-length text messages to Android users. In Google Messages and most other Android SMS apps, these messages come in as “Liked…” or “Loved…” with the continuing text being the what’s being reacted to. In some cases, a copy of the entire previous text message could follow, which is quite annoying.

Thankfully, an APK teardown (via 9to5Google) strongly suggests Google is working on a solution to this. It’s not clear from the teardown what the solution is exactly, but it looks like Google could replace the “Liked…” text messages with Emoji. It is unclear if this will utilize the built-in reactions system within Google Messages or just send a basic Emoji. Either way, it would be better than it is now.

Essentially, Messages could simply catch a reaction message, convert it to an Emoji, and then erase the message itself, all before you ever see it. If true, this would cut down one of the big barriers between iPhone and Android users.

APK teardowns usually reveal features that could arrive in a few weeks or months. As such, it’s possible it won’t be long before we see this roll out.

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