Google’s messaging services never really could compete with Facebook’s own Messenger or with WhatsApp (to be fair, though, Facebook did purchase WhatsApp when the app was already popular). But maybe the third or fourth (fifth?) time is a charm. Word has it that Google is working on yet another messaging app.
The New Google Messenger
This time around, Google plans to take advantage of its software capabilities by lacing its new app with chatbots that respond to questions when asked (yes, like Siri). The chatbot that Google is building will also be able to look on the Internet for things, so you can ask Google’s new messenger questions and it will respond by providing you with researched answers. Google isn’t usually quiet about the products that the company is developing, but this time Google hasn’t said much.
The company did tell WSJ today that they are in the middle of developing a messaging app, but they haven’t stated what the app will be called, when it will launch, or what else it will do. However, it’s entirely clear that Google needs to get back in the messaging arena in order to compete with those companies that are clearly cornering this market.
Google’s Hangouts never really took off, and neither did the company’s Messenger app. It’s hard to say why Facebook has so much success when Google has failed so completely, but it’s in part to do with the fact that Facebook’s social network was already so popular when FB Messenger arrived on the scene. Once Facebook purchased WhatsApp and its many followers, the social network just took over the messaging sphere.
Google’s Hangouts and Google Plus (the company’s social networking service) are still used by some people, but neither of these compete with what Facebook is doing. Oddly, Google Plus has turned into something of a strange place used by those anti-Facebook people, too. The network is still very much alive, but it’s somewhat underground (though not really).
Playing Catch Up
Whether or not Google will be able to catch up with Facebook remains to be seen, but it doesn’t look likely. Even if Google provides some really great messaging features, it will take a lot for most people to move to a Google messenger. Once people get used to the messaging service that they prefer, it’s hard to switch. Plus, WhatsApp has such a strong following in other countries outside of the United States, whereas Google is mostly known for its search capabilities.
Regardless, Google is still trying to get into the messaging arena with its newest messaging app, which will debut sometime in the new year (presumably). What it is called, what it will do, and when that launch date will be are unknown yet, but you can look for a new messaging service from Google soon. Will you use it? Would you switch from whatever you are using now? What do you want to see from Google? These questions, and more, will be what people want to know.