In my opinion, going with QKSMS by default is confusing the message (pun!) of the product as a whole. The first sentence of the “About Us” section of the website states:
“e/ is a non-profit project, in the public interest. We build open-source mobile operating systems that respect users’ data privacy.”
Sure, QKSMS may look more modern and it may be a little easier to use (going off of what others have said prior to me), but if it has no encryption capability (or really anything that improves the users privacy), than I feel like it doesn’t really jive with the ethos of the foundation.
Personally/Selfishly, my vote is Signal. I’ve been using it for awhile now and I really like that I can access it from a desktop with other signal users as well. I use it on my phone as the default SMS app and I haven’t had any problems.
I’ve never looked in to Silence, but I would much rather go with it than an app that doesn’t speak to what the foundation is trying to achieve.