After some ill-fated previous attempts, Google looks to be trying once again to tie several of its apps together into a product aimed at business users.
According to reporting by The Information (via Android Central), this app will combine Hangouts Meet and Hangouts Chat, respectively Google’s video conferencing and text messaging apps, along with Gmail and Drive for email and file sharing.
This new app is currently undergoing testing, but once it launches, it will become part of the G Suite collection of apps, Google’s enterprise-aimed product, and will compete with services like Slack and Microsoft Teams.
While this is a product aimed at professionals, being able to squeeze multiple Google communications apps into one would be an attractive prospect for normal users too. It’s not exactly difficult to send things from one Google app from another thanks to smartly designed integration, but it could still be easier.
iMessage’s features are similar but are aimed less for business use. Apple's messaging service is linked to multiple Apple and third-party apps so you can send links, a location, files and other items all within the same app rather than having to open them up separately or use an alternative service like email.
Currently the closest thing that Google has is its own messaging app, which can send locations, files, has a companion web app and can use Google Assistant for certain tasks. But it has poor third-party integration in comparison. This in-development business app shows that Google’s still thinking how to add more functions into a single application, and hopefully means good things for Android users in future.