Google introduces new cross-platform messaging service, Hangouts, available now!

Much rumored leading up to Google I/O, Google has today introduced their all new, cross-platform messaging service, Google+ Hangouts. Just a day after BlackBerry announced BBM for iOS, Google is bringing their offering and it's available to download from the App Store now.

We'll give it the full run-through when the dust has settled, but Hangouts promises to offer a fully featured messaging experience for iOS users. Group messaging, synchronized notifications, photo albums and the ability to save or turn off completely chat history. Oh, and free group video chat. Yeah.

We already have iMessage for iOS to iOS and Mac messaging, but Google's offering promises to extend those horizons to your friends and family using Android devices, or even just those using the web. Sounds promising, but what do you think? Grab a copy from the App Store now, and be sure to report back and let us know what you think.

Source: Android Central

Richard Devine

Senior Editor at iMore, part time racing driver, full time British guy

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Reader comments

Google introduces new cross-platform messaging service, Hangouts, available now!

19 Comments

The app wants me to change all my google services usernames to my real name. No thanks, il just wait for BBM to come out.

Like Rene, I stay away from google stuff, and I find it amazing folks will give google access to even more personal information--especially iOS users!

Google doesn't sell your info, they use it. Apple sells it to third parties. Check Apple's privacy policy. So how is Google the villain?

If you seriously think that Apple is an exception because they're a hardware company, then you need to take a long hard look at their Privacy Policy. I have a ton of Apple products, but stop acting like they do no wrong.

My issue with all these platform specific messaging apps is that this is a separate app. At least iMessage is baked in to the same app you are getting SMS messages from. That makes it a more seamless UX. On my iPhone, with iMessage, I go to Messages.app enter a name, and it turns green or blue, depending on if they are on iMessage or not.
If this works the same on android, that will be great for those users. Thing is, I am not installing yet another messaging app. Deleted FB messenger because it is baked in the FB app.

I didn't but when I tried to download on my wife's IPhone 4S and the iPad, I keep getting a weird error.

I've given this a quick go and it looks nice enough. The UI is beautiful, as usual for Google these days, and it syncs between desktop/Chrome and the app instantly.

It doesn't integrate SMS. Have fun getting all of your friends to download yet ANOTHER messaging app, one that doesn't even allow the single standard that every phone has.

Umm whastapp doesn't integrate yet 200million use it...SMS is on the decline and am sure SMS integration will come

My family is too deeply embedded in Skype to use much else, though we do use Hangouts for group chats. The new apps - particularly the new desktop variants - will help a few of the older generation immensely, as they have always found it a bit difficult to navigate to a hangout from a Google+ or Gmail page.