RCS messaging will finally supplant SMS on Google Fi this year.

Google announced the change on its The Keyword blog, saying that it subscribers will be able to use any device that supports Google Fi with the (Android) Messages app set as the default messaging client. RCS allows for higher data limits when transmitting media, live typing indicators, read receipts and messaging over Wi-Fi and data networks, not just phone-only spectrum bands.

Google Fi has also notched agreements with carriers in 33 countries to access LTE networks at full speeds — a big upgrade from even some of the more advanced HSPA networks in these areas.

  • Austria
  • Belgium
  • Bulgaria
  • Croatia
  • Cyprus
  • Denmark
  • Estonia
  • Finland
  • France
  • Germany
  • Greece
  • Hong Kong
  • Hungary
  • Iceland
  • Ireland
  • Israel
  • Italy
  • Kazakhstan
  • Kuwait
  • Latvia
  • Lithuania
  • Luxembourg
  • Monaco
  • Netherlands
  • Norways
  • Poland
  • Portugal
  • Romania
  • Slovakia
  • Slovenia
  • Spain
  • Sweden
  • United Kingdom

Whether subscribers in these countries or in any of the other of the more than 200 destinations their Google Fi phone has network access to, they will pay the same rates as they do in the United States. It’s $10 per gigabyte prorated by every 10 megabytes with a cap at $60 for individuals. Continued high-speed use is allowed through to 15GB in the same cycle before throttling kicks in. Customers can request Google Fi to lift the speed caps and continue paying the same $10 per gigabyte rate until the next bill.

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