Google continues to improve the experience with the default Android messaging app, Google Messages. Following a failed #GetTheMessage campaign highlighting Apple’s lack of RCS support and a new app icon update, Google Messages is now testing the ability to react to a message with any emoji. Previously, reactions were limited to only seven emojis. This news comes from 9to5Google after it previously confirmed the feature by enabling it in a previous version.
Now when you tap and hold an incoming message on the Google Messages app, you can react with any emoji you wish. A new icon in the emoji picker shows the option to add a new emoji that isn’t listed.
You can tap on the emoji in the corner of the reacted message and get a closer view of this emoji next to the name of the recipient that reacted with it. If viewing reactions from a group message, all the names and the emojis they reacted with will appear in a pop-up prompt.
Currently, the feature is only available from the latest Google Messages Beta release. We can confirm the change is reflected on our Google Pixel 7 Pro so the update may be rolling out in stages.