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The Google Hangouts messaging app has been announced today at the Google I/O 2013 keynote event.

The app, which had been rumored for some time and was thought to be called Babel and Hangout, is finally a reality and is set to be available starting today for Android, iOS and the web.

Google Hangouts has been introduced during today’s Google I/O keynote by Vic Gundotra, Google’s Senior Vice President of Engineering and it allows for cross-platform communication across devices. It will turn Google’s messaging services, like Google Talk or the Chat and Hangouts features in Google+ into a single services.

The app is a standalone one, not part of Google+, and is focused on conversations, not contacts, with the most important people you talk to ranked, so you can add them to a conversation easier. As you can see in the screenshot below, the chat window is very fluent, just like a normal discussion, with the possibility to add images (which are stored in albums, for easy access).

google hangouts

Said conversations will be stored in the cloud, so you can always go back to your archive.

The best part is that clicking the video button will send everyone into a group video call, a feature that’s also available in the app, and it’s free, too. Probably one of the most interesting features it will offer you is cross-platform notifications, meaning that if a notification is removed from one of your devices, it gets removed from all of them.

Will you be using the new Google Hangouts messaging app? Do you think it will change the way we communicate?

Bogdan Bele
Bogdan is a tech writer and blogger, passionate about everything mobile in general and Android in particular. When he's not writing about technology or playing with various gadgets (which he's doing most of the time), he enjoys listening to a lot of music and reading.
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