G Suite updates to streamline Hangouts and Gmail

Google is planning to remove SMS capabilities from Hangouts. In a new post on its G Suite blog, Google has detailed this change, as well as others. The changes are part of a larger effort to “streamline” Hangouts and Gmail as G Suite offerings.

Effective May 22, Google will remove the carrier SMS functionality in Hangouts for Android. Administrators of enterprises affected by the move will soon receive notice of the impending change and will need to find a replacement for it.

nexus2cee hangouts sms hero

Google is currently working with more than two-dozen major carriers—with a combined base of over 1 billion Android users worldwide—to get them to make Android Messages the messaging standard for their subscribers. It is also working with several Android handset makers to get them to pre-install the app on their devices.


The first part of this is of course Google’s focus on its new Hangouts Meet and Hangouts Chat apps, and how that’s going to impact the traditional Hangouts app for enterprise and consumer users alike.

We’ve been working hard to streamline the classic Hangouts product for enterprise users, and, as part of this effort, will be removing carrier SMS functionality in the classic Hangouts app for Android, starting on May 22.

Google Talk will also be fully transitioning to Hangouts starting this summer. The company says that after June 26, users of Talk in Gmail will be automatically transitioned to Hangouts.

google talk hangouts

Also, Google says XMPP federation with third-party providers will no longer be supported as of June 26th and the Google Talk app for Android will soon cease functioning as well

Native Add ons for Gmail are Coming Limited to G Suite Only for NowGoogle also says it will soon be retiring several Gmails Labs features:

So in the coming weeks, we will retire the following Labs: Authentication Icon, Google Voice Player, Picasa previews, Pictures in chat, Quick Links, Quote Selected Text, Smartlabels, and Yelp previews. (Expected: No earlier than April 24, 2017)

Finally, Google is retiring a couple of legacy Google+ features that have long lived in Gmail:

As part of our continued effort to focus Google+ around shared interests, we’re retiring two legacy Google+ features in Gmail: the ability to email Google+ profiles and the use of Google+ Circles. (Expected: No earlier than April 24, 2017)

To wrap things up

The changes announced this week will help Google prioritize and focus on features in G Suite that deliver the most benefit for users.

Stay tuned for more Google Tips & News!


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