Leading CPaas provider, CLX Communications has launched the first global Rich Communications Service (RCS) messaging API with SMS fall-back.
From today, enterprises will be able to sign-up to a limited beta trial that will enable them to test A2P RCS in selected countries, visit www.clxcommunications.com/products/rcs-business-messaging/ for more information.
Late last year the GSMA confirmed that 50 mobile operators have already launched RCS and that it currently has 138 million users worldwide, forecast to grow to 350 million in 2018 and over a billion by 2019.
SMS fall-back guarantees the delivery of messages either as a rich message for Android handsets that have RCS enabled or as a standard SMS message if an RCS client is not present on the device.
The RCS Universal Profile 2.0 standard allows rich content features such as images, videos and intuitive reply buttons that can link to further menus and functions. It’s designed to promote two-way interaction between the enterprise and the customer, enabling enhanced customer-service functions including chatbot interactivity.
RCS messaging also includes read and received receipts so that marketers can perform A/B testing, gauge the success of messaging campaigns and make changes on the fly to improve customer engagement.
TJ Thinakaran, COO at Callfire, one of the first CLX enterprise clients to integrate into the CLX RCS API commented: “At Callfire we’re excited to launch RCS into the US market and provide a rich customer experience with the advanced features RCS messaging brings. Deliverability being critical, it is important be able to manage a hybrid between RCS and SMS for the foreseeable future. CLX has done great job of making it easy for enterprises to use RCS without losing the reach of SMS.”
The GSMA estimates that by 2021 the A2P messaging market will be worth $74 billion and RCS will be a key driver of this growth as well as the emerging Messaging-as-a-Platform market as a whole (MaaP). MaaP is the evolution of mobile messaging as a customer engagement channel, which can include making use of business (A2P) messaging that incorporates chatbots that use artificial intelligent (AI).
RCS received a significant boost in Feb 2017 when Google announced the launch of its Early Access Programme to Android Business Messaging, the first A2P Service based on the RCS standard.
Rob Malcolm, VP of Marketing & Online Sales at CLX said: “It’s clear that RCS will drive the Enterprise messaging market forward into a new era of customer service and engagement. Importantly it is now possible to include AI based enriched services such as chatbots in a native Mobile messaging channel.”
“Whilst that’s great news for enterprises and brands alike, it’s important to make provision for non-RCS based handsets by offering SMS as an automatic fall-back so that messages reach everyone.”