Deutsche Telekom's Albanian subsidiary -- Telekom Albania -- launched a rich IP communications service that will replace native SMS and MMS applications on Android-powered smartphones.
The rich communications service (RCS) is being supplied using U.S. company Jibe Mobile's IP Communications Cloud and is the third such service based on its technology to be launched by a Deutsche Telekom subsidiary, following similar deployments by Telekom Romania and Slovak Telekom in 2014.
Jibe said the Telekom Albania service will initially be available as a downloadable app for Android smartphones, and will provide the operator's subscribers with access to video chat, IM and group messaging features. Telekom Albania subscribers will also gain the ability to share large photo files and videos, and send SMS and MMS to users not using the RCS service.
A compatible RCS application will also be available to iPhone users in the market, Jibe Mobile added.
Kobus Smit, head of voice and messaging at Deutsche Telekom, said the Albanian launch is another step in the operator's "expansion of IP communication for our customers throughout Europe".
He added that Jibe Mobile's centralised cloud architecture has delivered "significant improvement in efficiency and much faster time to market when launching RCS in multiple geographies". Deutsche Telekom will leverage those benefits to "interconnect with other local and international carriers," Smit said.
Deutsche Telekom's move in Albania comes a month after the operator's T-Mobile US subsidiary launched a similar RCS-based messaging service, named Advanced Messaging.
The service offers users access to services including group messaging, notice of message delivery and views, and delivery of high resolution pictures and videos of up to 10 MB in size, sister publication FierceWireless reported.
While the U.S. service is initially only available on Samsung's Galaxy Grand Prime smartphone, T-Mobile US said almost a dozen new devices due for launch by the year-end will be capable of accessing the feature.
- see this Jibe Mobile announcement
- read this FierceWireless article
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