Google is acting to link its disparate services together. The first move, just a couple days ago was to unify Gmail, Google Drive and Google+ Photos, but today the search giant revealed that it went even further: it unified its communication services as well, under a unified messaging system simply called Hangouts available for iOS, Android, and the web (Chrome extension).
Simply put Google Hangouts aims to replace what we know as Google Talk, Google+ Messenger and the original Google+ Hangout video chat service. Hangouts is a messaging app with some great tweaks.
Google has explained the features in a blog post: You now have the option to switch from the current version of chat to Hangouts simply by clicking on “Try out” next to your chat list and you’ll be switched to Hangouts.
Here are some of the features:
Messaging is richer, and more responsive. Photos and emoji make conversations more fun, while real-time activity indicators really bring them to life.
Your conversations can last. With conversation history, you can swipe back in time and relive all your favorite moments. (You can also turn off history, if you want.)
No more annoying notifications. Once you see a notification on one device, we’ll clear it from your other Android devices and computers. You can also snooze notifications when you don’t want to be interrupted.
You can always say hello, face-to-face-to-face. Whether you’re 1-on-1 or with a group of friends, you can always make a free video call to everyone you’re with.
Download Hangouts for iOS, it’s free [App Store link]