Allo launched Tuesday night to much hype and excitement. Unfortunately, much of that excitement turned to disappointment as users figured out that Allo wouldn’t be able to replace their default text messaging app, largely because of the lack of any sort of text messaging support.
It’s not all bad news, though. It’s likely that Allo will get full SMS support in a future version, according to a hint from Allo’s co-lead Justin Uberti.
Uberti since Allo has launched has been pushing that this is only a version 1 application. In other words, it’s not going to be good right off the bat, but improve over time. One of those improvements will likely be SMS support, according to a recent post on Twitter.
@HarrisonHopkins was SMS a v1 feature of Messenger? That is the fundamental question.
— Justin Uberti (@juberti) September 22, 2016
Uberti has a point. Most third-party messaging solutions right off the bat didn’t have all the nice features we’ve come to know and love. It’s something that’s happened over time. That’s what agile development is: small and incremental changes. It allows the development team to constantly reassess the direction of the project and where they want it to head. It’s a excellent way to handle the development process, not having to worry about getting your software “just right” before release. It cuts down on development costs and the time it takes to bring a product to market.
The big problem everyone seems to have is that Allo, right now in its current state, isn’t competing with WhatsApp or Facebook Messenger of 2013, it’s competing with them now in 2016. As it stands, Allo isn’t able to stand up to these big dogs, as it’s pretty much just a glorified messaging app with a preview of how Google Assistant might, in the future, be able to enrich our conversations.
Because of this agile development process, we’ll probably see SMS sometime laterdown the line, but for now, that’s just not going to be the case. Meanwhile, Facebook Messenger, WhatsApp and other messaging services all have their own agile development processes, getting better through every iteration.
Will Allo be able to catch up with that? We’ll see.