iMessage reactions now appear as emoji on Android

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iMessage reaction
But only inside the Google Messages app.
Image: Killian Bell/Cult of Mac

iMessage reactions now appear as emoji inside the latest version of the Google Messages app on Android.

Prior to this release, Android users saw somewhat lengthy template messages when they received an iMessage reaction from a contact using an iPhone. This change offers a cleaner, much more streamlined experience.

Google Messages adds iMessage reactions

If an iPhone user gave a text message a “thumbs up” reaction, for instance, Android users would see something along the lines of “Liked …” followed by the original message. “Disliked,” “Emphasized,” and “Laughed at” where some of the other template messages that replaced reactions on Android devices.

While some iPhone users may know iMessage reactions don’t appear as intended on Android devices and probably avoid them, they’re particularly annoying in group chats among multiple iPhone and Android users. But Google Messages has taken steps to make them a lot better.

The latest version of the Google Messages app now displays iMessage reactions and emoji that appear under the message that’s been reacted to — much like on iOS. Tapping the emoji confirms it has been “Translated from iPhone,” just in case Android users aren’t sure why they’re appearing.

It seems not all reactions translate perfectly to Android, however. The Verge reports that reacting to a message with a heart on iPhone causes the heart-eyes face to appear inside Google Messages. But it’s certainly a big improvement.

Rolling out now

The latest Google Messages update is rolling out now via the Play Store, according to 9to5Google, but be aware that it might take a little while to reach all Android users.

It’s also worth noting that this change is available only inside Google’s own Messages app. You won’t see it if you’re using another messaging client from a third-party vendor like Samsung.