Google Messages is one of the most popular messaging apps on Android, thanks to its support for RCS chat features and its simple interface. In the past two months alone, we’ve seen the latest receive important security-related additions for group chats, hints of more prominent RCS branding throughout the app, and an expansion of emoji message reactions.
We can now add one more visual addition to the app, with the Messages app beginning to show contact images within an individual conversation.
While the section next to the name was empty before, the contact image now takes up the space on the left and makes use of it. Images are picked up directly from Google Contacts, while the user’s profile is accessible by tapping the name or profile image.
While there was also a search icon on the top of a conversation, next to video and audio call buttons, it’s gone with the new iteration. Instead, the Search option is within the nearby overflow menu.
This tweak appears to be a part of Google Messages version 20230313_01_RC00.phone.openbeta_dynamic, so it could be a while until it appears on the stable version. It’s not an addition that will change how you use Messages, but one that will make it better to use, as you no longer need to tap the person’s name to go to their Google Contacts profile.
Simply downloading the beta version of Messages doesn’t appear to enable the feature. So its visibility could be limited at this point, though that could change over the next few days. You can either wait for it to roll out to the stable version of Messages or download the Messages beta APK from APKMirror and try your luck.
A constant theme over the past few years has been Google’s firm stance on the obvious merits of RCS messaging, championed by Google Messages.