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Hangouts desktop Chrome App going away starting June 2020

Google announced that Chrome Apps - including the Hangouts Chrome App - will no longer be supported for most Windows, Mac and Linux users as of June 2020. Most ChromeOS users will be able to run Chrome Apps through June 2021.

That means if you are using the Hangouts Chrome App on your desktop computer, you may have to switch to the Hangouts extension before you are migrated to the new Hangouts Chat.

A Long Time Coming 

In 2016 Google announced that Chrome Apps would be gradually phased out. In December 2017, Chrome Apps were no longer browsable in Chrome Web Store for users on desktop computers running Windows, macOS or Linux.

In the original timeline those platforms would no longer be able to load Chrome Apps beginning in early 2018. That deadline was postponed, but no new date was provided.

In September 2018, with the release of Chrome 69, the Hangouts Chrome app started displaying a warning message: "The Hangouts Chrome app will be replaced by the Hangouts Chrome extension soon."
Notice in Hangouts Chrome App that the Chrome App will be going away "soon". 

"Soon" is one of those terms that rarely means "next week" or "next month" in Google-speak. In this case it meant more than a year and a half.

Google has now announced the timeline when Chrome Apps will stop working:
  • March 2020: Chrome Web Store will stop accepting new Chrome Apps
  • June 2020: End support for Chrome Apps on Mac, Windows and Linux for most users. Customers with G Suite for Enterprise and G Suite for Education Upgrade may be able to get an extension until December 2020. 
  • December 2020: End support for Chrome Apps on Mac, Windows and Linux for all users.
  • June 2021: End support for Chrome Apps on Chrome OS for most users. Customers with G Suite for Enterprise and G Suite for Education Upgrade may be able to get an extension until June 2022.
  • June 2022: End support for Chrome Apps for all Chrome OS users. 
Developers are encouraged to build a Progressive Web App, Chrome Extension, or Chrome Extension-enhanced web page as a replacement.

The classic Hangouts Chrome Extension

If you are using the classic Hangouts Chrome App on desktop, you can switch to the Hangouts Chrome Extension.

The primary difference between the Hangouts App and Hangouts Extension functionality is that the Hangouts Extension doesn't have a "Transparent UI" option or conversation bubbles.

The width of the non-transparent UI window can be resized into a relatively narrow column, but there is no way to get the Hangouts Chrome App's conversation bubbles.

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