Why these Android smartphone users won’t be able to send SMS at all – Times of India

At first thought, you would wonder who really sends text messages any more through the good old SMS way. If you are on iOS then chances are that iMessage may be your default mode to communicate with other iPhone users. But on Android? Chances are slim. Still, Google has been working hard to improve the Messages feature with quirky additions. However, it looks like some Android users might not be able to send SMS very soon. Here’s why:
A code has been spotted in Google Messages build
As per multiple online reports, a string has been spotted in Google Messages (version 7.2.203) where it clearly states, “Messages will stop working on uncertified Android devices from March 31, 2021 onwards.”
What are uncertified Android devices?
Uncertified Android devices are those that are officially Android but don’t go through or have failed the official Google certification process for Google Mobile Services. These are smartphones that do not have the mandatory set of Google apps like Search, YouTube or Chrome.
What are the risks of uncertified Android devices?
As per Google’s support page, there are multiple risks and drawbacks of using an uncertified Android devices. These are:

  • Devices that aren’t Play Protect certified may not be secure.
  • Devices that aren’t Play Protect certified may not get Android system updates or app updates.
  • Google apps on devices that aren’t Play Protect certified aren’t licensed and may not be real Google apps.
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  • Apps and features on devices that aren’t Play Protect certified may not work correctly.
  • Data on devices that aren’t Play Protect certified may not back up securely.

Why won’t Messages work on these uncertified devices?
Unless a device goes through Google’e verification process, it can’t have access to Play Store. In the case of Messages, Google will not be able to ensure end-to-end encryption properly, leaving user data and message history at risk.

How to check if your Android phone is uncertified?
If you are using a ‘known’ Android phone brand, chances are minuscule of it being uncertified. However, you can still check if you device is certified or not. Follow these simple steps:

  • Open the Google Play Store app.
  • Tap on the three-lined button on the top-left corner.
  • Select Settings from the sidebar.
  • Scroll down to the About section.
  • You will see a Device Certification option, which will either say Certified or Uncertified

What are the examples of uncertified devices?
Currently, Huawei phones aren’t verified by Google as certified devices. If you root your phone or make — voluntarily or by mistake — system-level changes, your phone might get uncertified.

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Sagar Biswas

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