RIP Hangouts: It’s now optional in the Google Apps package for OEMs


Okay, so “RIP Hangouts” is probably a slight exaggeration, but it’s clear that the focus for Google is going to be on Allo and Duo going forward, not their older messaging platform. We’ve seen it happen with Google+ where the service exists without really being put front and center, and we’re probably going to see it again.

Google has officially removed Hangouts from the list of required apps that OEMs have to install on their devices to include the Google Apps package. This change happens on December 1st of this year, and while it doesn’t mean Hangouts is going away, it means new users will have to go download the app from the Play Store instead of having it on their home screen right after they take the phone out of the box for the first time.

OEMs can still include Hangouts if they’d like, but outside of some OEMs like HTC that independently push Google services, I don’t think we’ll see much of that. Other OEMs and carriers especially prefer to push their own messaging solutions, and Hangouts only complicates that.

OEMs will have to start including Duo in their Android phones going forward, but oddly enough, Allo is being left out to dry. It’s great that Google is finally pushing for a cleanly integrated video calling solution for Android, but Allo is the service that’s struggling to maintain users. You’d think that bundling the messaging service front and center, like they’ve done for the Pixel, would make more sense, but if any of us actually knew what Google’s plan was for a messaging platform we could probably get rich picking lottery numbers, too.

Let’s just hope Hangouts doesn’t go the way of Reader.

source: Android Police

About the Author: Jared Peters

Born in southern Alabama, Jared spends his working time selling phones and his spare time writing about them. The Android enthusiasm started with the original Motorola Droid and an unhealthy obsession with fixing things that aren't broken. This accidentally led to being the go-to guy for anything more complicated than a toaster, which he considers more of a curse than a blessing. Jared is enrolled in online classes at the University of Phoenix, and spends his spare time on video games and listening to music.

  • Tony Kelts

    Hangouts is my favorite texting app. I can go right into a video call or just send a video with a text. I can use any platform, plus either app or web.

    • Peter Deepinsky

      Yeah, but they are stripping it clean. MMS is an unsung casualty of this ridiculousness.