Google's chat plans: Kill Allo, upgrade Duo and invest in Messages

Verizon Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL to get RCS chat on December 6

With less than 50 million active users, it is safe to say that Allo didn't quite make the mark Google hoped it would. The original article follows.

In parallel, we built Google Allo, a smart messaging app, to help you get more done in your chats and express yourself more easily. After the company announced Allo development had been "paused" back in April, a new report claims the app will be completely discontinued. It'll someday bring powerful RCS messaging services to most of us.

For now, Hangouts is alive and as buggy as ever, with no plans for that to change just yet.

This new Allo report comes from sources familiar with the situation at 9to5Google.

If youve been trying to access Allo today, you probably were upset to find that an outage wasnt letting messages go through and Google Assistant, which first launched on Allo, was not working either. Despite being a generally competent messaging app, Allo had nothing to draw users to it initially - and Google had no strategy to compensate this. The app has slowly decayed over time. With Hangouts and Allo out of the way, Google may finally have a straightforward approach to messaging.

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Android Messages and Duo. One thing seems to be sure: if you use either of these apps, it's time to switch to something else.

Update: Google has confirmed in a blog post that it will shut down Allo by March 2019. "Given Messages' continued momentum, we've made a decision to stop supporting Allo to focus on Messages", Klainer wrote on Thursday. It'll keep its Duo video calling service around for the foreseeable future, though. The company promises they will continue to improve the service with features that utilize machine learning.

Google didn't dispute this in any of their clarifications, only acknowledging that they'll soon offer Hangouts users the chance to use Hangouts Chat, which is now only available to G Suite customers as more of a collaboration tool. We know that's happening, we just don't know when.

Now, before you get too excited, it's worth mentioning that Verizon was said to add RCS support for Pixel phones in mid-November during a dedicated event, but that didn't happen. Some users are unable to "heart" posts while others are experiencing issues with undelivered messages. Enter your email to be subscribed to our newsletter.

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