Update (6/26): Welp, today’s the day. If you’re one of the few users who are still using Google Talk, the chat service that first debuted in 2005, Google will be transitioning you to Hangouts later today.
Google has been warning Talk users to switch to other messaging apps for a few years now, so it’s not like this news should blindside anyone out there. Even so, if you’re not a fan of Hangouts but happen to be in search for another messaging apps, try checking out our best messenger apps or best SMS apps for Android lists.
Original post (3/24): In yet another change that will impact some of Google’s chat users, the company has announced that Google Talk features in Gmail will be shut down on June 26, as users will be asked to use the Hangouts chat client instead.
Google Talk first launched in 2005 as the official chat client for Gmail, but when the company added support for Hangouts in Gmail in 2013, it was the beginning of the end for the older Talk service. Today, Google stated that on June 26, Gmail users will be automatically transitioned to Hangouts, unless they have any previous contractual commitments. If you are still using the old Google Talk Android app, which was replaced with Hangouts in 2013 in the Google Play Store, that app will now stop working. These latest moves should come as no surprise as Google Talk support has been on life support for the past few years.
In related news, a number of Gmail Lab add-ons will be retired on or around April 24. They include Authentication Icon, Google Voice Player, Picasa previews, Pictures in chat, Quick Links, Quote Selected Text, Smartlabels, and Yelp previews. Finally, two legacy Google+ features in Gmail, the ability to email Google+ profiles and the use of Google+ Circles, will also be retired on April 24.
This news comes as Google also confirmed it plans earlier this week to remove SMS text messaging services to Hangouts on May 22.