Google has already announced that it will close Hangouts and it is now shifting to Google Chat over the next year. By the end of 2021, Hangouts will most likely retire. Hangout users will be shifted to Google Chat for free. Users will be able to move their conversations, contacts and history to the new Chat platform.
So, how will Google Chat be different? It will include Hangouts features like direct and group messaging, with helpful additions like send to inbox, faster search, emoji reactions and suggested replies. “With Chat, you can more easily plan with others on goals and similar interests, share and collaborate on files, and assign tasks to help keep everyone on the same page. In addition, Chat features the same strong phishing protections we built in Gmail, so if a link is sent to you via Chat, it will be checked against real-time data from Safe Browsing and flagged if it’s found to be malicious,” explained Google.
Meanwhile, Google has rebranded G Suite into Google Workspace to provide a more “integrated experience”. While Google Workspace is similar to G Suite, it will sell plans to users that will offer a custom email for businesses which will include tools like Gmail, Calendar, Meet, Chat, Drive, Docs, Sheets, Slides, Forms, Sites, and more.
With the new Google Workspace, you can create a new Google Doc within the chat window itself and everyone in the chat group will automatically get access to the Doc. This integration makes it easy to make and share Docs with members of a group and you no longer need to separately create a Doc and share it with everyone in that group individually.