(Updated: Now Available) Google Introduces Hangouts, Unified Chat Service Available Later Today

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Update: It’s alive!

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Google announces what we’ve all been expecting, Hangouts, a unified chat service that allows you to have conversations between iOS, Android and Internet. Hangouts will support multimedia messaging, text, photos and video conversations all synced between mobile, desktop and the web.

Hangouts will be available for both Android and iOS beginning later today. Hangouts will bring together five different Google properties Gmail, Google+, iOS, Android and Chrome. You can save your chat history, sent emoji icons, photos and make video calls. Hangouts will replace Google Talk, Google+ Messenger and the original Google+ Hangout video chat service.

All things considered, Hangouts is basically a messaging app in the same space as WhatsApp, but with total integration into all of your Google services.

With Google Cloud support, conversations will sync everywhere and users can send messages to friends even if they are offline.

Amazing stuff from Google, available later today.

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