Google Plans To Shut Down Google Hangouts By 2020

James Marshall
December 3, 2018

"Last spring Google announced its pivot for the Hangouts brand to enterprise use cases with Hangouts Chat and Hangouts Meet, so the writing has been on the wall for quite some time regarding the Hangouts consumer app's demise", 9to5Google reported late on Friday. While Hangouts is still available on the Google Play Store and as part of Gmail, Google's webmail service, recent reviews of Hangouts have been anything but great. The messaging service includes messaging, video chat, SMS and Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) features.

The company abandoned development of the consumer version of Hangouts more or less past year. Google's reputation for creating services and not really knowing what they plan for them - the equivalent of throwing up application "thought bubbles" - can be really frustrating for users. This RCS-based messaging app from Google is likely to launch in 2019 or early 2020, after which the company will put Hangouts to sleep. After launching Allo a few years ago - Allo has also been abandoned by the way - Google ceased working on Hangouts.

As mentioned, Google already offers replacement apps for this. However, instead of working on improving Google Talk, the tech company simply made a decision to kill it and launched Hangouts. RCS stands for Rich Communication Services and Google has been keen on making it the default service for its messages across platforms.

It looks as though Hangouts will join a growing list of Google chat products to bite the dust.

Google has indicated for years now that it planned to position Hangouts as a competitor to workplace chat apps like Slack.

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