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Google ends its experimental Reply app after less than a year

The app aimed to bring smart reply features to multiple chat apps, but Google just notified users the experiment is over.

Published onOctober 10, 2018

  • In February this year, Google launched its experimental Reply app.
  • Now, eight months later, Google just notified users that “the experiment has now ended.”
  • It isn’t clear if the experiment was a success or not, but the service likely won’t work as well or at all going forward.

Back in February, Google’s secretive incubator group known as Area 120 launched a new experimental app called Reply. Area 120 and Google hoped Reply would bring smart reply functionality to various chat and email services.

However, Google notified Reply users today that “the experiment has now ended” and Reply will no longer work properly going forward.

Google did not make it clear if the experiment was a success and we’ll see the functionality of Reply in other Google apps and services — or if the Reply experiment was a dud and Google is just sweeping it under the rug.

Members of Google’s Area 120 want you to learn to code for free
Android Studio

If you have and use Reply, it will still work for a bit. However, Google says, “while it might still work for the next few months, you may encounter bugs, or see that the suggestions aren’t as good.” Keep that in mind if you use it to compose important or sensitive messages!

Area 120 developed Reply to bring the smart reply functions we see in Google apps like Gmail and Allo to other apps — even ones which aren’t owned by Google. Since smart reply within Gmail especially is an indispensable tool for many, Reply was certainly a welcome app. It’s too bad it didn’t work out.

Do you use Reply? Did you find it to be really helpful, or did it not do much for you? Let us know in the comments!

NEXT: Google’s Area 120 wants to give you things to do when you travel

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