The Messages app by Google brings SMS messaging to your Android device, but simplified. The user interface looks clean and modern, you get all the necessary features (GIFs, emojis, automatic spam blocking), and with RCS on the horizon, it is set to compete with Apple's widely-used iMessage service.
App Description from Google Play
Meet Messages, Google's official app for texting (SMS, MMS) and chat (RCS). Message anyone from anywhere with the reliability of texting and the richness of chat. Stay in touch with friends and family, send group texts, and share your favorite pictures, GIFs, emoji, stickers, videos and audio messages.
Clean, intuitive, and comfortable design
Instant notifications, smart replies and a fresh new design make communicating faster and more fun. With dark mode, you can use Messages comfortably in low-light situations.
Select or take pictures and videos directly from the app and share easily. You can even send audio messages to your contacts.
Send audio messages, emoji, stickers, or your location. You can also send and receive payments with Google Pay.
Now you can find more of the content shared in your conversations: tap on the search icon and select a specific contact to see your messaging history with them and all the photos, videos, addresses or links you shared with each other.
Chat features (RCS)
On supported carriers, you can send and receive messages over Wi-Fi or your data network, see when friends are typing or when they have read your message, share images and videos in high quality, and more.
Messages is supported on devices running Android™ 5.0 Lollipop and above.