Making this work is important for operators. Their revenue from voice and messaging is under increasing pressure from Web services such as WhatsApp and Skype. With smartphone sales increasing, more users can also choose these applications instead of regular voice calls and text messages.
Messaging has been a very important revenue stream, but other than image sharing using MMS, it hasn't evolved as a service.
"This is about stepping up our game and deliver services that our users want ... This isn't like SMS, where we launch, sit back and let the money roll in, not at all. We are going to continue to innovate," Nourouzi said.
Getting this far has taken the operators more than four years.
The Rich Communication Suite (RCS) Initiative, which the joyn services are based on, was announced in February 2008, with the purpose of turning the IMS (IP Multimedia Subsystem) framework -- which is also the basis for Voice over LTE -- into standardized services offered by mobile operators.
"It is a long tunnel we have gone through to get all the elements in place," Trickey said.
Even if operators are now on the right track when it comes to the roll-out of services, getting subscribers to adopt it on the massive scale needed for it to become useful isn't going to be easy.
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