We have been hearing about the eventual shutdown of Google Hangouts since 2018 when Google confirmed this, and finally it may be happening. The Hangouts app is now getting its own warning messages, urging users to switch to Chat. Google Chat is the logical successor for Hangouts, as far as text messaging is concerned. The video and audio call capabilities of Hangouts are expected to be handled by Google Duo, since the new Google Chat app does not have integrated voice or video call capabilities at this time. The latest updates for the Hangouts apps for Android and the iPhone are actively notifying users about the switch.
This comes after Google updated the Gmail app for iPhone and Android phones to integrate the Chat functionality, giving users the option of accessing Chats there or using the dedicated Google Chat app. The Chat messaging app, till a while ago, was only available for Google Workspace users, but is now available for personal accounts as well. That means the Gmail app on the iPhone and iPad as well as Android devices, will now have four tabs at the bottom of the interface—Gmail, Chat, Meet and Rooms.
Hangouts is displaying certain messages in the app to inform users who continue to use it. “It’s time to switch to Chat”, “Hangouts is going away soon, so switch to Google Chat now. Your recent Hangouts conversations are ready for you in Chat” and “Hangouts is going away soon, so switch to Chat in Gmail now. Your recent Hangouts conversations are ready for you in Gmail” are being seen by Hangouts users. While this is happening, there remains no confirmed date when Google will flip the switch and turn off the Hangouts app, once and for all.