Hangouts app updated with SMS, HD video and much more

Hangouts app updated with SMS, HD video and much more
So far, there has been no indication that today's "A Morning with Google+" event will have anything to do with Android 4.4 or the Nexus 5, but there has already been a huge announcement for Google's Hangouts app. The update isn't live yet, but Vic Gundotra has announced big updates to Hangouts including SMS support, HD video and much more.

SMS support is something that has been promised for a while, and now you will be able to use Hangouts to send and receive text messages as well. We're assuming this update is only coming to Android, because of the iOS restrictions though. Beyond that, there are a lot more updates coming to Hangouts on both platforms. 

In the messaging side of the app, it will now be very easy to share your location with someone in a chat. There will be a pin icon which will grab your location from Google Maps and share with someone. Google is also adding support for sharing and playing animated GIFs right in the message stream. 

On the video side of things there are a number of cool enhancements. Gundotra has said that starting today, Hangouts on all platforms will support HD video streaming. Google is also adding the auto-awesome experience to Hangouts videos to help adjust brightness of webcam streams, and beyond that there are a number of other improvements planned, but it is unclear if they are coming to mobile right away like altering colors, and focus in a video chat. 

The updates aren't live just yet, but when they are, they'll be at the source links.

Download: Hangouts (Android & iOS)

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19 Comments

1. PapaSmurf

Posts: 10457; Member since: May 14, 2012

Yes! Finally!

2. fistigons

Posts: 368; Member since: Feb 11, 2012

iOS has been able to send SMS messages since 2 weeks ago. We were all complaining about it.

10. Kjayhawk

Posts: 294; Member since: Oct 07, 2010

No iOS was never allowed to send SMS through Google hang outs they are allowed to make free phone calls though. Trust me I have hangouts installed on my iPhone now. Chances are SMS will never be allowed on hangouts for iOS

11. NexusPhan

Posts: 632; Member since: Jul 11, 2013

No chance it will ever be allowed. Apple doesn't allow apps to access SMS. It forces you to use Apple's apps.

21. joey_sfb

Posts: 6794; Member since: Mar 29, 2012

Apple policy state that any apps that change the interface or user experience will be banned e.g third parties keyboard such as swype or internet browser that allow the running of adobe flash in the device. Don't understand why they want to do that but its their platform their rules.

5. NexusX

Posts: 613; Member since: May 16, 2013

when do we get the calling function with google voice?

6. PapaSmurf

Posts: 10457; Member since: May 14, 2012

^ Waiting for this.

7. pimpclark

Posts: 12; Member since: Oct 27, 2011

What about making phone calls like the IOS version?

8. improv

Posts: 96; Member since: Sep 09, 2013

No Nexus 5 updates as expected but the live stream was an interesting watch.

12. WHoyton1

Posts: 1635; Member since: Feb 21, 2013

its not finished....

9. NexusX

Posts: 613; Member since: May 16, 2013

The ios Hangout app has decent quality for its calling function All VOIP apps for android are sh*t, I am hoping google will perfect this with updated Hangout app for android.

22. fistigons

Posts: 368; Member since: Feb 11, 2012

I use groove ip for my VoIP calls and I love it. It integrates into you google voice account. Then I use google talk for my SMS. But I would love if Hangouts added the call features that the iOS version has and allow MMS. Then I could get rid of google talk, groove ip and just use Hangouts for everything.

24. NexusX

Posts: 613; Member since: May 16, 2013

Ive used groove ip to my disappointment, half of the time i cant log in, when i do, calls keep dropping in and out and theres always a delay even when im on wifi, ive tried every android based app with similar result, hangout for ipad on the other hand, works great and has little delay

13. DAddYE

Posts: 48; Member since: Oct 04, 2013

I want to point that being able to receive txt message in the interface is a thing, receive txt message in the network protocol is another. IMHO that's the killer feature of iMessage, add that I can receive message sent to my phone number on my mac ...

18. Sentient6

Posts: 16; Member since: Dec 02, 2012

You can with a an app called MightyText. Just install it to your phone from the Play Store and then install the plugin to your browser.

20. DAddYE

Posts: 48; Member since: Oct 04, 2013

is a different thing, this one is like airdroid

16. jove39

Posts: 2137; Member since: Oct 18, 2011

What about google voice integration?

* Some comments have been hidden, because they don't meet the discussions rules.

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