Hangouts Meet and Hangouts Chat are no more as Google confirms a rebranding.
It’s time to bid Hangouts farewell because Google will no longer be using the name in its G Suite offering. Instead of making a formal announcement, however, Google subtly revealed the decision in a blog post explaining the security measures and features of their chat and meeting services.
G Suite: Google’s answer to the work-from-home set up
In a nutshell, G Suite is a collection of collaborative and productivity apps that help businesses become more efficient and effective. The apps that make the G Suite are Gmail, Calendar, Sheets, Docs, Slides, Forms, Sites, Plus, Drive for storage, Hangouts Meet, and Hangouts Chat (before rebranding).
Because the G Suite lineup is set up to cater to the needs of big enterprises, it has definitely proven to be a blessing in the novel coronavirus pandemic wherein countless people are forced to work from home.
With the rebranding of Hangouts, the services that bear its name will now be called Google Meet and Google Chat. With the current situation brought by the pandemic, the rebranding is a smart move on Google’s part because as Google Meet and Google Chat, these apps could now effectively compete with popular competitors such as Zoom and Slack while making use of the renown and trust that come with the Google name.
Hangouts, however, will still be available for everyone else in its consumer (classic) version. The rebranding is specific only for the enterprise-based G Suite offering.
Not to be confused with Google’s other texting service, RCS chat (which is now Android’s primary texting platform), the new Google Chat is exclusively for the G Suite offering. As Google Chat, it is set to compete with apps like Telegram and Slack, which provide a more engaging workplace messaging for businesses.
Video conferencing has become an ever-popular business meeting platform, especially when most businesses are forced to adapt to a remote work setting. The pandemic has brought forward the necessity of video conferencing platforms, and while Zoom currently holds the top spot in this category, the rebranded Google Meet is all set to dethrone it.
As per Google, the company says that the app usage for Meet had doubled since January, and every day, they get two million new users. To handle that many users every day, Google says that it was made possible by the secure-by-design infrastructure, built-in protection, and the global network that the company makes use of in order to preserve the security of their clients’ information and privacy.
With privacy and security becoming a hot issue thanks to the vulnerabilities exposed in Zoom’s services, Google reassures its clients that they are taking proactive protections in order to prevent the same problems that had occurred within Zoom.
“During the COVID-19 and beyond, we will continue to protect Google Meet users and their data, and keep innovating with new features to make our tools helpful, secure, and safe,” Google says in conclusion.