Google’s unified chat service to be named “Babel”, to work across five platforms

March 29, 2013

    Google Babel

    We’ve heard several reports over the past week about Google’s upcoming unified chat service. Two separate sets of screenshots have leaked, but both turned out to be fakes on closer examination.

    Now thanks to some “trusted sources” of Droid Life, we learned that the service previously rumored to be called “Babble” could actually be named “Babel”. However, according to the report, Babel could just be the internal name of the new messaging service.

    The unified service will supposedly work seamlessly across Chrome, Google+, Gmail, Android, and iOS. Google Voice wasn’t mentioned, but we shouldn’t count it out completely.

    Here are some of the features that are supposedly coming to Babel/Babble:

    • Access the same conversation list from anywhere
    • A new, conversation-based UI
    • Advanced group conversations
    • Ability to send pictures
    • Improved notifications across devices

    Obviously, the inspiration for the name (if it turns out to be the final name of the service) would be the Biblical account of the Tower of Babel. Come to think about it, the name would make sense, although there are some negative connotations as well. Not to be discounted is the strong possibility that the name Babel is trademarked.

    With Google I/O just weeks away, we should hear more details soon.

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    Comments

    • http://www.linuxdistroreview.com/ Bo

      I hope it will be an app, and not part of the OS, so that everyone can download it.

      • http://twitter.com/DS1997247 Daniel DS

        It won’t matter as long as it will be integrated inside the Chrome browser, since all Chrome users will easily be able to start using it without even having to download anything.

        • http://www.linuxdistroreview.com/ Bo

          …then how will Android users use it?

        • Girish Kamath

          What Bo means to say is that the Talk app for Android was revoked from the Play Store very early (when it was called Market n not Play Store) so hopefully they will be launching Babel for Android on the Play Store.

          When on my mobile device, I do not want to use a web app in Chrome for chatting; I’d prefer a native Android app so that conversations are available offline as well.

    • http://twitter.com/Darkmyth_pt Darkmyth PT

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tower_of_Babel

      and i cite
      “God came down to see what they did and said: “They are one people and have one language, and nothing will be withheld from them which they purpose to do.” “Come, let us go down and confound their speech.” And so God scattered them upon the face of the Earth, and confused their languages, so that they would not be able to return to each other, and they left off building the city, which was called Babel “because God there confounded the language of all the Earth”

    • http://www.facebook.com/JCAaronPayne JC-Aaron Holy Man Payne

      I have been studying the connection between the computer industry and Religion. I’ve gone over it so much that I am more confused than ever about which is good and which is evil. If Google is God and the Masons Aprons symbolize the M. Why is it they worship the East Star? Windows is 888 which represents Ra 88 the ancient Egyptian Sun God and the Roman Catholic Church and I read it as Hate. H being the 8th letter of the alphabet and ate=8 . I am so confused and can’t seem to get anyone to discuss the topic. What do you think?

      Sin,

      Your Excellency, Lord and King
      Jesus S. Aaron Uni Peg Linux/Unix Eisus Christ Payne XXXVI
      CEO of all I See Vatican City the Holy SEE
      JC Holy Man Payne
      Kin of Jesus Christ

      ubuntu (“humanity towards others”) or another translation would be: “the belief in a universal bond of sharing that connects all humanity”

      • g0vt_h00ker

        Um what?

    • http://twitter.com/nichjs JNMedia.co.uk

      Clearly a nod to Douglas Adams’ Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, and the Babel Fish.

      • Aaron Berlin

        Which is a nod to the Tower of Babel.

        • Tony Raffini

          Or both.

          Or maybe its more of a nod to the babel fish because Google Babel will translate messages between two people using it in different languages.

    • Arthur Dent

      They got the name from the Bible? Or some movie released a few years ago? I may be wrong, of course, but it seems pretty obvious that the name is from The Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy. The Babel fish embeds itself in your ear and makes you understand any language in the Universe -> it makes communication possible! Just a thought.

      • http://www.mikestenger.com/ Mike Stenger

        Nice catch!

      • Brian Powell

        The Babel fish is a nod to The Tower of Babel which is a biblical story.

    • Mikesphoneandtab

      Why are people making religious connections? Babel as in the tower of Babel is spelled just like that, “Bable”. This is “Babble” or “talking”.

      • Justin Winker

        I thought it was obvious… Babel is where multiple languages were born, and here, Google is unifying multiple platforms into one.

    • companyemails

      I sure hope Babel includes integration with and a direct way to launch hangouts without having to open and app first (a small widget to launch hangouts would be great).

    • http://www.streamingchurchesonline.com/ Tony Wittock
    • Lau Boyd

      Just ‘Bable’ me… Sounds funny :D

    • Don

      Was Baable already trademarked?

      • http://www.mikestenger.com/ Mike Stenger

        You mean Babble? Just looked it up. The trademark for Babble was abandoned on August 11, 2011.

    • Mark Mann

      I have to ask these questions – is this yet another texting client ?

      Don’t we have enough already ?

      How will Google differentiate its new product from others ? Remember Wave?

      Why would the market want to use this client ?

      • http://www.mikestenger.com/ Mike Stenger

        “Is this yet another texting client?” Yes.

        “Don’t we have enough already?” Yes, though this is supposed to replace Talk, G+ Messenger, etc., and bring all of Google’s existing chat services into one service, Babel.

        “How will Google differentiate its new product from others?” Your guess is as good as mine :-)

        “Why would the market want to use this client?” Well, if you already use Google’s existing chat applications, then you’d obviously want to use Babel. Otherwise, it depends on the features which we’re still not 100% on and your preference of platform really.

    • anon

      You sir are and idiot

    • http://www.facebook.com/ChrisStrife Chris Strife

      The name alone will scare people from using it. A simple name like Google Chat would lure in so much more people to use it (if that’s their goal).

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