hangoutsGoogle has today updated its Hangouts messaging app with the ability to make voice calls, Google Voice integration, inline GIFs and more.

What's New in Version 1.3.0

- See which of your friends is using Hangouts, and who can be reached right now
- Call phone numbers from your iPhone, iPad, or iPod Touch (free to the US and Canada)
- Make and receive calls using your Google Voice number
- Send and receive animated GIFs that play inline
- Hangouts will temporarily turn down your music (instead of stopping it) when you receive an incoming message

While the app allows users to make voice calls, Google Voice users also get the ability to receive calls via their Google Voice number and can use Voice calling credits to make international calls, notes Google+ Hangouts product manager Kate Cushing in a Google+ post.

The new feature comes after both Facebook and Apple have made efforts to direct people away from using traditional cell phone calling using carriers' radio towers and instead use VoIP services like Facebook Messenger voice calling and FaceTime audio.

Hangouts is a universal app that's available in the App Store for free. [Direct Link]

Top Rated Comments

oneMadRssn Avatar
103 months ago
Does it still offer no way of going "offline," or signing off without really logging out of the entire app?

I'd love this app, but I don't want to be on gchat 24/7.
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)
ElZeus Avatar
103 months ago
Can someone give me one fair reason to put google back into a new ipad I got

Free calling.
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)
bozzykid Avatar
103 months ago

I'm unsure why they integrated Google Voice calls into Google Hangouts because it doesn't seem the right place for it, but I'm happy you can finally do this in an official Google app.

Google has said Hangouts is the future of Google Voice. Eventually the GV app will probably be dead and all the functionality will be rolled into Hangouts. I'm guessing the GV messaging feature will be the next feature to roll into Hangouts.
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)
NocturnalJazz Avatar
103 months ago
Google Voice app on iOS needs a redesign. Woof.
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)
deannnnn Avatar
103 months ago
Does it still offer no way of going "offline," or signing off without really logging out of the entire app?

I'd love this app, but I don't want to be on gchat 24/7.

This is the exact reason I don't use it. Why can't I log out when I want to log out and log back in when I want to log in without having to re-set up the entire app? Google wants us to replace iMessage with gChat/Hangouts, but gChat has a fundamentally different purpose for me.

----------

Can't you simply close the app?

No. Closing the app keeps you logged in.
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Poisonivy326 Avatar
103 months ago
Can someone give me one fair reason to put google back into a new ipad I got because the tablet I tried last Xmas with quite reasonable specs like the nvidia t30s for the time, was so trashy that even a Nokia Lumia I got for the total 6 months the tablet was between me and the service was thriving in comparison?

Even if gapps are much better for iOS than their laggy trashy stack they call an operating system, with 6% effectiveness against native coding because they use JAVA VM to copycat the iOS layers like micro$oft with silverlight and wp7+8 shouldn't I be called a dumb idiot to install them again?

I get ballietic the moment I see adcoiches and all the google gimmicks for serving damn ads in every place of my canvas trashing my eyes with neon-faux badly designed intrusive ads they purposefully make them look like this?

Forgive my bitterness but google has become so greedy that they destroyed their tablet share with the fragmentation and they'll realize it. Google apps shouldn't be in the AppStore but I understand their being there because of the accounts many users have. I have completely written google off, even as search engine. And I'm not the only one.

You don't even browse youtube? Or have a gmail account?
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)

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