Google Messages introduces new delivery status icons inspired by Signal

Google Messages App Gets Update for RCS Messaging

Google has always been a dedicated supporter of the RCS messaging standard and continues to push it forward. Recently, the Messages app has undergone an update to make its interface more in line with other encrypted messaging apps by replacing text delivery indicators with icons.

October Change

Last October, Google announced plans to replace delivery statuses like “Sent,” “Delivered,” and “Read” with check marks, similar to WhatsApp and Signal. Recently, beta testers spotted check marks appearing more frequently and the changes are currently rolling out in a phased manner. Google has not provided much explanation on what each icon represents, but we will clarify that now.

New Icons

The new icons are as follows:

  • A lock icon will display next to a delivery status to indicate that the message is part of an encrypted conversation.
  • Outbound messages will feature a stopwatch icon, replacing the “Sending” status.
  • A single-circle check mark will replace the “Sent” indicator.
  • Delivered texts will show two check marks stacked atop each other, similar to Signal.
  • Once the recipient reads the text, the indicator will be filled with a solid color.

Functional Benefit

There is no functional benefit to these visual changes. They represent a different way of showing message status and feel more contemporary, like other encrypted messaging services. However, it would be helpful if Google provided returning users with a pop-up explaining the meaning of each icon.