We’re tempted to say that SMS is already obsolete but it’s not. Texting will not be replaced by instant messaging yet because not all mobile consumers have regular access to the Internet and can pay for unlimited data. For most emerging and developing markets, they reply on SMS and voice calls to easily communicate. We don’t think the idea of SMS will be eradicated in the next few years because it still is one of the easiest, fastest, and cheapest way. It is also used by mobile developers for authentication.
With the arrival of Android O, Google will be improving SMS authentication to ensure that the users and apps remain private and secure.
The Android team is adding a new API that developers can use on their apps to allow verification codes through SMS. The result is that apps will not have to request SMS permission. The change may not be noticeable to regular mobile consumers but before Android O, some apps usually ask for verification by asking phone numbers by entering a verification code. This is often experienced in instant messaging apps like Messenger, Whatsapp, or Telegram. It may be enough for others but SMS verification codes are added to one’s inbox and may remain unread by some applications.
The new API that will come with Android O is said to make things simpler and faster as ‘PendingIntent’ will be created. The idea is that it will search for incoming SMS for a long token which is then sent to the app directly and not the inbox. The result is one less permission. You see, one less permission, the better for everyone.