Just over a month ago we saw Google deliver one of the more eagerly awaited improvements to the service, doing a massive overhaul to how Voice handled MMS and brought such picture-messaging support to the vast majority of carriers in the US and Canada. Any way you looked at it, it was good news, but even this big step didn’t bring us all the way to where some users might hope we’d be, with a few notable carrier holdouts and a link-based MMS workaround that was a little less than ideal. Today, Google helps wrap up those loose ends, announcing further MMS progress.
Last time we mentioned AT&T and T-Mobile joining the already-GV-MMS-supporting Sprint, and now Google’s happy to announce that Verizon has similarly joined the program; now you really can send and receive Google Voice MMS messages with all of the big US and Canadian carriers. While it’s fantastic to see Verizon support arrive, this is just the latest instance of the carrier being the odd man out when it comes to new Google stuff, like the confusing situation users were faced with regarding Nexus 6 Verizon compatibility.
The other big change is native photo support, letting people who use Google Voice with Hangouts easily attach photos to messages that come through as straight-up MMS traffic, rather than directing viewers elsewhere through an attachment URL.
We know, with the proliferation of image-sharing apps and image support through social networks, MMS seems positively antiquated by now, but considering how many mobile users have yet to make the full plunge into smartphones, it’s still a valuable tool to bring to Google Voice’s repository.