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Google has announced the replacement of Hangouts with Chat – users will be transferred in 2021



Google seems to have decided on the future of the Hangouts messenger: it will be replaced by another messenger from the search giant – Chat. Starting in 2021, Google will open Chat (the answer to the corporate messenger Slack) for ordinary users – now it is part of the Google Workspace package (it was previously called G Suite, and before that – Google Apps).

As we have noted many times, Google has never been consistent in its strategy for the development of messengers and communication services. Earlier this year, Google entrusted vice president Javier Salter with a communications product line to clean up the mess. And now the changes have begun.

Starting in 2021, users will be able to switch from Hangouts to Chat, available both as part of the Gmail mail service and as a separate application. The corresponding data transfer tool (conversation history) will be available in the first half of 2021. Exactly when the full transition from Hangouts to Chat will take place is not specified.

At the same time, Google announced some other changes to replace Hangouts with Chat. They will affect users using a separate Hangouts app outside of Gmail. Firstly, support for Google Fi will disappear – the corresponding functions will become available in the Messages application (analogous to Apple iMessage). Second, in a similar way, Google Voice users who have used Hangouts for phone calls will be migrated to the Voice app. Starting in 2021, the EU and the US will have new telecommunications regulations, and Google plans to remove support for voice calls from Hangouts in 2021 (no exact date has been announced).

Google hasn’t said what it plans to do with the consumer version of Hangouts – it will be out of the Workspace suite by the end of next year. But all indications are that Google intends to phase out the Hangouts brand and all associated services in favor of newer products. In other words, Hangouts is waiting for the fate of Allo, which has recently added to Google’s graveyard of digital products, and others.

By the way, not so long ago there were rumors that eventually Google was planning to abandon Duo, replacing it with Meet.

Source: Google

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