Google announced on its developer blog recently that Android 4.4 KitKat will allow developers, and in turn users, to set third party apps as the default SMS application. Yes, several applications already allow this by using Google’s “hidden APIs,” though Google says it currently discourages that “because hidden APIs may be changed or removed and new devices are not tested against them for compatibility.”
That changes in Android 4.4 KitKat, however, and Google recently published guidelines for developers so that their third-party SMS clients can be ready to go right away. A user will be able to choose a specific default SMS app, similar to how you can set a default launcher right now, and that will force the Android 4.4 KitKat SMS_Deliver_Action string to deliver the text to the appropriate application. Google says that only the default application will be able to write back to the SMS provider, and says that “it’s important that you update your messaging app as soon as possible to be available as a default SMS app, because although your existing app won’t crash on an Android 4.4 device, it will silently fail when attempting to write to the SMS provider.”
Android 4.4 KitKat is expected to make its debut any day now, though Google has been silent on any invites for a press event. Developers can head to the source link below for more information.