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Google keeps iMessage in mind for iPhone to Pixel 7 switchers

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Google has said a lot about RCS and iMessage in recent months, and the iPhone-only solution is top of mind as it starts a Pixel 7 holiday push aimed at switchers.

Coinciding with the start of Black Friday sales today, Google published “4 ways that switching to Pixel is easier than ever” this afternoon. The blog post is very explicitly for people “eyeing a Pixel 7 or Pixel 7 Pro as a present for [themselves] or someone else, but switching from iOS to a Pixel sounds like more of a hassle than a gift.” Apple did something similar ahead of the iPhone 14.

Google is addressing concerns across four tentpoles, with the focus on gifting different from past years when it was communicating directly to the buyer.

All you have to do is connect that old phone with your Pixel 7, then your selected data — like contacts, photos and messages — will transfer over. And the whole process takes about 30 minutes on average!

The high-level point to prospective 7 and 7 Pro buyers and gifters is that “Your Pixel can send and receive messages with all other Android and iPhone devices,” with Google noting recent efforts like support for iMessage reactions in the Messages app.

We recommend that you deregister your phone number from iMessage when you make the switch to make sure that iMessage doesn’t intercept your messages.

Meanwhile, the company links to privacy.apple.com when transferring from iCloud Photos to Google Photos. It makes the point that Google Accounts offer 15GB of storage — or “three times as much storage as you may be used to” — in a subtle burn about iCloud sticking to 5GB after all these years. 

The recommended transfer process is connecting your old iPhone via cable to the new Pixel 7 as more data gets transferred that way (versus the Switch to Android app over Wi-Fi), with Google providing this new breakdown:

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