Google announced that it is shutting down Google Hangouts today. Google is switching Hangouts users over to Google Chat, the company’s Slack-like instant messaging app for businesses.
Starting November 1, Hangouts will no longer be available to users. This was the final offering of the service. You can still use the app on Android and iOS.
Hangouts had an arguably slow death with Google discontinuing it in 2021. The company announced in June 2022 that Hangout users will be migrated over to Chat in Gmail or the app.
Once the data transfer is complete, users will have a chance to download a copy of their Hangouts-based data from Google Takeout. That date has been set for December 2023.
Hangouts has been around long before it became a standalone app. Google+ had the option to send messages to other users through Hangouts, which quickly grew into one of the most popular messaging services available. That’s 5 billion downloads on the Google Play Store!
If you need a private conversation, but don’t necessarily want to use Hangouts, then Chat might be the answer. With access to extra features like security and collaboration tools, as well as spaces and editing Docs, Slides or Sheets side-by-side with other users, you’ll feel less separated from your team. You can also send GIFs and use @mentions to notify someone in the group.
Google has previously said that Chat is a better way for users to connect with people. In June, Google Chat Product Manager Ravi Kanneganti wrote in a official blog, “As we take this final step to bring remaining Hangouts users to Chat, we hope users will appreciate our continued investment in making Chat a powerful place to create and collaborate.”