A couple of days ago, there were reports that Google will shut down Hangouts by 2020. Given that Hangouts has not received any meaningful updates in well over a year now, this was not surprising. Plus, Google had already branched Hangouts into Hangouts Meet and Chat to make it ideal for enterprise use.
Well, Google’s Product Lead for Communications, Scott Johnston has hit back at the original report saying it “is pretty shoddy reporting.” He clarifies no decision has been taken as to when Hangouts will be shut down. Plus existing Hangouts users will be upgraded to Hangouts Chat and Meet.
Hey @hallstephenj, I run Hangouts and this is pretty shoddy reporting. No decisions made about when Hangouts will be shut down. Hangouts users will be upgraded to Hangouts Chat and Hangouts Meet. Your source is severely misinformed. You can do better.
— Scott Johnston (@happyinwater) December 1, 2018
While the tweet is scathing in nature, one simply cannot deny that Google’s messaging strategy is a complete mess. After Hangouts, the company launched Allo which it again shuttered down after a couple of years of development in favor of RCS messaging.
With Google transitioning Hangouts users to Hangouts Meet and Hangouts Chat, the company is in one way shutting down Hangouts. The messaging platform has not received any meaningful updates in more than two years now and significantly lags behind the competition. The Android app continues to remain bloated and heavy whereas the likes of WhatsApp and Telegram have only gone ahead and made their client better.
At this point, if you are still using Hangouts, you should simply look for an alternative and move to it. And ensure that the messaging platform is not from Google as sooner or later, it will meet the same fate as Google Talk, Hangouts or Allo.