Like it or not, it’s happening.
what you need to know
- Google will be migrating Workspace accounts from Hangouts to Chat Preferred on March 22.
- The move is the final step in Google’s phased migration, which began as early as 2019.
- The Hangouts Portal will continue to work after the migration.
Google is preparing to complete the final step of migrating Workspace users from its Hangouts messaging service to Chat.
The company posted an update on its support page with a timeline for the phased migration. According to the schedule, Phase 5 will begin on March 22, as the remaining Classic Hangouts customers are moved to Chat Preferred. This means that any Workplace customers accessing Hangouts from Gmail or the mobile app will be directed to Chat, and Workplace admins won’t be able to opt out of the migration as before.
In an accompanying post, Google noted that your Hangouts conversation history will be available on Chat except in “some special cases.” The Hangouts Portal will also continue to operate.
The move to migrate Workspace users in March could be the last step in Google’s effort to simplify its confusing work on messaging, which has included introducing, renaming and killing various (and sometimes very popular) apps. Hangouts is just the latest victim of Google’s slow phasing out.
However, not everyone was happy with Hangouts’ slow demise, which isn’t surprising considering it’s considered one of the best messaging apps on Android. At one point, users bombarded Chat with negative reviews, complaining that it was a step down from what users were used to in the Hangouts app.
Currently, the migration only affects Workspace users, although 9to5Google notes that personal accounts may have to be migrated to Chat at a later date.