Google’s New Chat Apps

Google's new intuitive chat app


[nextpage title=”Allo – Smart Messaging”]google-allo-dcSay hello or “Allo” to Google’s new chat app! And also Duo, their new video calling app.

Allo is a smart messaging app geared as a more casual chat app like WhatsApp and Line and uses your address book. Whereas Hangouts is good for SMS texting and chatting using your Google account.

Smart replies on Allo give a list of possible replies for you to choose from as Google scans and learns the latest message and gives you the option for quick replies.

Where Allo really stands out is the use of Google search.  It does a search for you like showing a list of restaurants you and your friend want to pick from right in the chat box if you happen to be on that topic. The search function helps with 2-way conversation as both you and your friend can see the search result rather than doing it individually. It can also do other Google search work like finding your reminders, calendar info etc.

Google will keep Hangouts as part of their “enterprise for work products” geared towards business users.

[nextpage title=”Duo – Video Calling”]Duo is another interesting new app. Duo allows users to make video calls with phone numbers on user’s address book and works with a weak connection too!google-duo-dc

Unlike all video calling apps, Duo enables users to see the user calling you before you even pickup. So you can start making funny faces on the camera or waving or whatever you like before the person you are calling has even picked up. It can make for a fun way to get your friend to pickup your video call by doing something silly as you’re waiting for them to pickup. See video below.

This seems like a fun new direction for video calling but nothing too exciting. But being able to video call with a weak connection will certainly be an added bonus especially when you’re making the call over long distance.

[nextpage title=”Is Allo Going To Be Useful?”]Is there room for another chat app? Google thinks so with their new smart messaging app, Allo.

Google already have chat apps available like Hangouts and Messenger as the default messaging app on Android and now Allo. Companies don’t normally launch the same type of app to do the same thing. Facebook bought WhatsApp and that utilizes user’s phone numbers for online messaging while Facebook Messenger utilizes Facebook friends.

Features like voice assistant and learning capabilities built into the app are good, whether people takes advantage of this is another story. It can give users better efficiency to get things done while in the app chatting, but it doesn’t offer much else that you can’t find from established messaging apps.

Why not build these features from Allo into Hangouts instead via update or a big overhaul instead? This would reduce confusion in the market and not disconnect their users from their own messaging Hangouts app. Or they could eventually end Hangouts down the road and make Allo the default.

We already have WhatsApp, Line, Facebook Messenger, and Messenger for those on iOS available, do you think adding another Google messaging app will be useful? Let us know.

Andrew is a co-founder of DeviceCritique. As a tech savvy individual, he aims to explains tech in a simple manner while also providing support for those who need help with their devices or computers.

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