Google has announced the timeline of the transition from classic Hangouts to Chat and Meet for its paying G Suite customers.
The tech giant said that Hangouts retirement will start in October 2019.
Starting April 16, Chat will become available on the web for G Suite domains that have classic Hangouts enabled, but it won’t replace Hangouts just yet. Between April and September 2019, several Hangouts features will come to Chat, ahead of the former’s shutdown in October, the VentureBeat reported late on Tuesday.
However, Google won’t kill off Hangouts for regular users until those G Suite customers are all comfortably using Hangouts Chat and Hangouts Meet, according to The Verge.
The death of classic Hangouts wouldn’t come until 2020, and that seems pretty likely given this guidance, The Verge report added.
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 has taken away SMS messaging.
The European Union’s antitrust regulators on Wednesday fined Google 1.49 billion euros ($1.7 billion) for abusing its dominance in the online search market by blocking rivals.
Google has abused its market dominance by imposing a number of restrictive clauses in contracts with third-party websites which prevented Google’s rivals from placing their search adverts on these websites, the European Commission (EC) said in a statement.
“Today the Commission has fined Google 1.49 billion euros for illegal misuse of its dominant position in the market for the brokering of online search adverts,” EC Commissioner Margrethe Vestager said.
It is the third EU fine for Google in just two years.
“Google has cemented its dominance in online search adverts and shielded itself from competitive pressure by imposing anti-competitive contractual restrictions on third-party websites. This is illegal under EU antitrust rules,” Vestager said.
The Commission said the fine which is equivalent to 1.29 per cent of Google’s turnover in 2018 takes account of the duration and gravity of the infringement.
“The misconduct lasted over 10 years and denied other companies the possibility to compete on the merits and to innovate – and consumers the benefits of competition,” Vestager said.
Websites such as newspaper websites, blogs or travel sites aggregators often have a search function embedded.
When a user searches using this search function, the website delivers both search results and search adverts, which appear alongside the search result.
Through AdSense for Search, Google provides these search adverts to owners of “publisher” websites.
Google is an intermediary, like an advertising broker, between advertisers and website owners that want to profit from the space around their search results pages.
Therefore, AdSense for Search works as an online search advertising intermediation platform.