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Both Hangout Chat and Meet are now available for web, Android and iOS users.

With Hangouts still integrated into some of Google's core products (e.g. on-demand video conferencing linked to Calendar events), it's likely that consumers will still find a use for Hangouts going forward. As 9to5Google noted, there hasn't been any movement on development for the app in some time, and Google removed Hangouts' support for SMS in May of previous year.

Given that the rumoured death of Hangouts is still more than a year out, any devotees of the platform have ample time to make peace with its reported demise.

The news of Hangouts impending closure comes courtesy of 9to5Google which cites a source "familiar with the product's internal roadmap".

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While it's not clear why Hangouts will be shut down, it has been hinted by Google that it wants users to shift to its RCS chat feature within Android messages. After launching Allo a few years ago - Allo has also been abandoned by the way - Google ceased working on Hangouts. Since 2012, when it killed the Google Talk, the company has tried a number of messaging apps. Recently, the company also shut down Google+ because of lackluster performance.

Hangouts was launched as a replacement for Gchat in 2013 by the tech titan but has been losing features in recent years as the company has stopped updating the app and taken away SMS messaging.

Although Hangout is not something as popular as WhatsApp, or even Facebook Messenger, it integrates with Gmail and hence used by a lot of people.in particular, it is a handy tool for workplaces where Gmail is often in use. What is a suitable alternative?