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Year in Review 2017: Google Hangouts gets down to business


This year Google has been focusing on Allo, Duo and Android Messages for consumer messaging. But if you use Hangouts, don’t despair, Google has assured users that Hangouts isn’t going to disappear for consumers, even as the focus shifts to productivity and business applications

This year Hangouts has been focused on updating the new Hangouts Meet video meetings, and Hangouts Chat - Google’s answer to Slack - which is not yet publicly available.

There wasn’t much in the way of new features for regular Hangouts, and some older features have been retired. The Hangouts mobile app no longer supports SMS messaging, except for Project Fi and Google Voice. And in April, In April non-business and live stream related video call apps were retired, along with the Google+ Hangouts API.

But Hangouts on Air is still part of YouTube Live, despite the rapidly aging interface. I suspect that live streamers who don’t need the discussion panel format have moved to using their mobile phone or more sophisticated streaming software.

I’m hoping that we see some updates for regular consumers in 2018.

2017 Google Hangouts updates

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