- Google is now urging Hangouts users to move to Chat.
- You can still use the messaging app, but some functionality will go away on August 16.
- Hangouts will shut down completely in late 2021.
Google has long made it patently clear that Hangouts is going away, and now it’s ready to show users the door. Droid Life reports that launching the Hangouts app now recommends moving to Chat as the older software is “going away soon.” Tap the link to visit Chat in Gmail and you’ll be signed out of Hangouts as you leave for the newer messaging platform. You can also launch the native Chat app.
You can still use Hangouts if you’re not ready to move to Chat at this stage. You might not have much choice in the near future, however. Google warned Workspace users in July that they might lose several Hangouts features on August 16 if they haven’t migrated by that point. If your organization leaves the “Chat preferred” option enabled in Workspace, for instance, you’ll lose the Hangouts mobile apps and Chrome extension.
All your Hangouts conversations will already be available if you do make the leap.
There’s still no absolute cutoff date for migrating Hangouts users to Chat beyond the vague “late 2021” target. Nonetheless, it’s clear Google really, really wants to retire the Hangouts name and consolidate its frequently scattered messaging efforts.