Google Message team is busy adding a lot of new features in the Google Message lately to make it more appealing for RCS users and providing features which we usually see in Telegram and WhatsApp. Photomoji, screen effects, noise cancellation for audio messages and animated stickers were a few which Google released for beta users recently. Now Google is also working on another feature which users requests and need a lot - message editing.

Google has added some flags for this in the beta version of Google Messages which hints that message editing feature could be real. The flags were added in the beta releases which released in the last week of November. I also did some digging of the Google Message apk and found some codes that give some hints about the message editing feature.

There were four flags added for this - 


The first flag indicate toward enabling a editing UI for a message which we want to edit. The second flag is about loading the edit history of messages from the message database. The third one seems about processing the edited message once a user edits it and the fourth flag indicating the processing of the edited message for the user who is receiving it. Unfortunately, enabling these flags does nothing for now because this feature is still a work in progress.

Above was the flag part and let's come to the apk digging part which I did to find some stuff and tried to make some sense out of it. Personally I am not a coder, so I don't understand every part of the process. It would be even difficult for a coder to make total sense of how it works because the Google apps are heavily obfuscated. So here is the image of code - 

This code is about a table creation in the Google Messages database file. The database file is called bugle_db which can be accessed if you have root. The said code creates a new table named message_edits in the database. This table contains columns message_id, latest_message_id, original_rcs_messages_id and there are two other columns which are added from some other code in this table - edited_at_timestamp_ms and received_at_timestamp_ms. So this table is probably where Google Message is going to store details of the messages you edit and process them for you and the other users. As far as I know, message editing is not a part of RCS standard by default. End to End Encryption was also not a part of it but Google did it anyway. Its possible that message editing may be added in RCS standard because it is kind of works the same way as message reactions. So having it is not going to be difficult part. Apple also joined the RCS wandwagon and said to work along with Google to work on RCS.

I have done decompilation of more Google Message apks to check when all this code was added. All this code was added in a beta build of Nov 19. So it's new and shouldn't be mistaken for any old code. As I mentioned earlier, this feature doesn't work for now even after enabling flags because Google is still working on it. So we have to wait a few more weeks to see it in action and also for any Google announcement about it.

For more such information/feature leaks about Google apps, you can join my telegram channel Gapps Flags and Leaks and group to discuss about it. You can follow me on twitter/x as well ;)