Google IO 2016 saw some new Android developments, but among them arrived a new text messaging/group messaging app that is designed to get you to talk more than you ever did on Google Hangouts. The new app is called “Allo,” which seems to be a more foreign way of saying “Hello” (“Allo” is “Hello” in a different language).
Google said at Google IO 2016 that the app itself is designed to get you talking more with your friends than ever. You can actually write messages on pictures, right in the Allo app. You can say hello as you usually do, with pre-selected or quick reply messages already available when someone posts pics of their meal, dog, or a gorgeous landmark they toured recently.
Allo also lets you show your excitement over something great or frustrating by allowing you to drag down the keyboard to shrink a message, or drag up to grow the size of your message and your emoji. Google’s measure here is something akin to what Slack is doing, with its “JUMBOMOJI” (yes, this is what Slack calls “large emoji”). so this isn’t exactly revolutionary. Even more puzzling than Allo is the question of, what will happen to Google Hangouts? What about Google+? Google could’ve simply released all these changes in Hangouts instead of creating an entirely new app to sample them with Android users. Google IO 2016 would’ve been the perfect time to revamp Hangouts and bring more goodies to the text messaging app that many love already. To emerge with a completely new messaging app shows that Google doesn’t really know what to do with the social scene; its messaging app and social network haven’t been a success so far, so the company keeps trying in hopes that something will stick.
I don’t quite know what Google is after with Allo, but the company keeps trying. I think that they should take that effort and put it into other areas (and leave text messaging to Telegram, Signal, and other popular messaging apps like Snapchat and WhatsApp, but that’s me).
What do you think? Are you willing to try out the new messaging app announced at Google IO 2016?