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Google Announces Retirement of Hangouts For its G Suite Users

Google Hangouts is a communication platform developed by the company which includes messaging, video chat, SMS and Voice over Internet Protocol (VOIP) features

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A Google logo is displayed at the entrance to the internet based company's offices in Toronto. VOA

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.

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The Google logo is seen at a start-up campus in Paris, France, Feb. 15, 2018. VOA

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.

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However, Hangouts still is a prominent chat option in Gmail on the web and the app also exists on the Google PlayStore.

Google Hangouts is a communication platform developed by the company which includes messaging, video chat, SMS and Voice over Internet Protocol (VOIP) features. (IANS)

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Tech Giant Google Testing ‘Incognito Mode’ in Maps

In July 2019, Maps also added more than 45,000 community and public toilets as part of the Central government’s “Loo Review” campaign that covers 1,700 cities in India

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One of the main building at Google's headquarters for European operations in Dublin Ireland. Wikimedia Commons

Google Maps may soon have an “Incognito Mode” for better privacy on your location data.

The “Incognito Mode” in Google Maps is currently being tested in the Android app, reports XDA Developers.

Just like in Google Chrome, “Incognito Mode” for Maps will have several specific privacy features when rolled out globally.

“The Google Maps 10.26 version also hints at a new ‘Eyes Free’ walking navigation mode,” said the report.

The “Eyes Free” mode will reduce how often you need to look at your phone when you’re using it to navigate as you walk.

This mode would “add more detailed voice guidance during walking navigation”.

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A man walks past a Google sign outside with a span of the Bay Bridge at rear in San Francisco, May 1, 2019. VOA

Last month, Google Maps added a new “Live View” navigation mode that overlays walking directions in augmented reality.

Google Maps has started rolling out privacy features to beta testers.

To make Maps more useful for users, Google is also adding support for bike-sharing stations to let people be informed on docked bike sharing services near them.

Also Read: Apple to Unfold iOS 13.1 with CPU Throttling Feature to iPhone XR and iPhone XS

After running tests in the US and elsewhere, earlier in May, Google rolled out speed limits and mobile radar locations in over 40 countries, including India.

In July 2019, Maps also added more than 45,000 community and public toilets as part of the Central government’s “Loo Review” campaign that covers 1,700 cities in India. (IANS)