Remember when Google finally integrated SMS into Hangouts, bringing Google’s beleaguered IM client a little closer to Apple’s iMessage? It seems like Google is now backing away from this strategy. In the newest update, Hangouts 7.0, the app now pops up a dialog box suggesting that you stop using Hangouts for SMS and switch to Android’s standalone SMS client, “Messenger.”
Besides threatening to remove a major feature, 7.0 adds a quick reply function, which lets you type out a reply right from the notification panel.
While Google’s biggest competitors treat IM clients like flagship products and invest billions of dollars into them, Google Hangouts still feels like a small, disorganized, understaffed side project. Now it seems SMS support will be getting worse, not better.
Submitted by: Arnfried Walbrecht