Google brings messaging together in new Hangouts

Google’s messaging systems have quickly become a mess – with the launch of Google Chat a decade ago they had a pretty decent headstart. But they quickly branched out into different channels with the launch of Google Voice, and later the Hangouts feature in Google+.

Google Talk was luckily built on the Jabber standard until now, meaning that you could quite easily integrate it with many different clients across many platforms. But Google never launched an official Google Chat client outside Android – until now. The new Google Hangouts app is meant to bring Talk, Hangouts video chat and Google Voice together into one product.

The new Google Hangouts app is available on Android, iPhone and also as a Google Chrome extension. Simply go find the Google Hangouts app in your relevant appstore, sign in, and off you go. On Google Chrome you need to install the Hangouts extension within Chrome.

We tested across multiple platforms and we are very impressed. Running the extension on a PC and a Mac, and then the mobile apps on iPhone and Android we were very quickly chatting and using video chat. It’s great to finally use Hangouts without having to have to deal with Google+ every time. The mobile apps have the typical sparse design we have grown to love from Google.

Have you tried it? What do you think?


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  • Henry Van Der Fartenburp

    Spoiler alert: It’s crap.
    – No delivery notifications
    – Can’t see if recipient is online/offline/away
    – No SMS intergration

    At this stage, they just renamed G’Talk.