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Google Hangouts Is Shutting Down. Here's What It Means
Jun. 29, 2022
Google Hangouts Is Shutting Down. Here's What It Means

Google Hangouts Is Shutting Down. Here's What It Means

It’s official, Google Hangouts is shutting down for good. The company announced the move in a recent blog post and gave us a timeline for the changes to take place.

If you’re a Google Hangouts user, then you’ll eventually need to move your conversations to Google Chat.

Read on to find out when that’s going to happen, what this change will look like, and why it may not actually be as bad as you might think.

Google Hangouts Shutdown Timeline

Hangouts has actually been on the way out for a while now. In March, the company got rid of Hangouts for Workspace users. Now, the same fate is coming for personal Hangouts users on both the web app and mobile app.

Mobile app users should begin seeing a prompt to move their conversations to Google Chat immediately. But web app users will begin seeing the prompt in July. That being said, if you use Hangouts on a desktop, you still have a few months before you absolutely have to make the change. The site will remain functioning until November, and Google has said that it will provide at least one month’s notice before shutting down Hangouts for good.

What Will Happen to Your Old Conversations

Google Hangouts has existed as a standalone product since 2013. That’s nearly a decade of conversations that you might have saved on the platform. Some of these might be sentimental to you or important for your career.

But don’t worry, you won’t lose this data forever when Hangouts shuts down.

If you have a currently-active conversation on Google Hangouts, it will automatically transfer to Google Chat when the site shuts down in November. So you don’t need to worry about proactively doing this yourself to save your conversations. The other cool thing is that you’re going to get the chance to download a complete copy of your Hangouts data before the site shuts down. This will be done through Google’s Takeout service. There aren’t any instructions available for this process as of the time of writing, but keep an eye on Google’s website to learn more.

Google Chat Is an Upgrade

Nobody likes being forced to stop using a service that they’re comfortable with. But Google Chat is a pretty significant upgrade from Hangouts. So even though the change may be annoying to deal with, it should be better for your conversations in the long run. That’s true for a few reasons.

First, Google Chat offers side-by-side editing for documents on Docs, Slides, and Sheets. This will give you the ability to continue talking with a collaborator while you work together to accomplish your goals. It could make the coworking process more efficient for you.

Google Chat also has a feature called Spaces. These are dedicated chat rooms for topic-based collaboration. For example, if you have a project for a new client at work, you could create a ‘Space’ for that project and invite everyone who’s working on it to collaborate together.

Finally, Google Chat also has a new integrated view of Gmail. You can switch back and forth from chatting sessions to your Gmail inbox with a single click of a button. This makes it a lot easier to multitask while ensuring that you don’t miss any important messages.

The Bottom Line on Hangouts Shutdown

Many people loved Google Hangouts, so it’s sad to see it go. But Google Chat is a superior service in just about every way. Even though it could take you some time to get used to it, doing so will be beneficial to your conversations.