Google Waves Goodbye to Allo | News & Opinion
The chat app simply wasn't popular enough, so Google is shutting it down and moving the focus to Messages. Allo users will be able to continue using the app until it goes offline at the end of March next year.
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Google isn't afraid to experiment with new services, but the company also isn't afraid to shut them down if they don't prove popular enough. The latest victim, which will soon class as a failed experiment, is the chat app for Android, iOS, and the Web called Allo.
In a post on the Google Blog, Matt Klainer, Vice President of Consumer Communications Products, explained that Google has been focusing on its messaging app Messages as well as "working closely with the mobile industry to upgrade SMS." The end goal is to do away with SMS and replace it with Rich Communications Services (RCS). It seems Allo is the big loser in all of this.
Google refers to Allo as a smart messaging app, created to "help you get more done in your chats and express yourself more easily." It's just not popular enough, though. Google already paused investment in the service back in April, and now support for it will end next year. Allo will continue to function until the end of March 2019.
While Allo may be disappearing, Google is keen to point out many of its best features are already available in Messages. For example, Smart Reply, GIFs, and desktop support have made the transition. Allo users can also easily export and download their conversations so no data will be lost next year.
When PCMag reviewed Allo last year, we found it to be a beautifully designed app that was an enjoyable experience for chatting with friends and sharing media. Google Assistant integration also allowed search to feature as part of the conversation. We also pointed out it faced daunting competition, and clearly that competition proved too great for many of us to bother installing it on our smartphones.