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The newest version of Hangouts for Android will be available for download this week in the Play store. Check out all the improvements below. #googleplusupdate  
Hangouts 2.1 for Android: SMS improvements and a homescreen widget

Today we’re launching the newest version of Hangouts for Android, rolling out to the Play store ( over the next few days. Highlights include:

- Merged conversations: SMS and Hangout conversations with the same recipient are now combined into a single conversation. You can control whether you want to send a message via Hangouts or SMS with the flip of a switch, and different message types will be easy to tell apart in the conversation. Of course, you can always merge and unmerge conversations if you’d like.

- Simplified contact list: now there’s two main sections in contacts — People you Hangout With, and Phone Contacts — making it simpler to navigate, and easier to use for SMS.

- Homescreen widget: add the Hangouts widget to your homescreen for quick access to your recent conversations.

- Performance improvements: today’s update includes better quality video calls, as well as improved SMS and MMS reliability.

The new version will be available in the Play store ( this week, so download or update and let us know what you think!

#hangouts #googleplusupdate 
Antonio Roque's profile photoOwen Swart's profile photoCindy Q's profile photobaljit baidwan's profile photo
Much needed! Hangout and SMS view being separated was my only gripe. Well done. 
Se ven geniales gracias :D
Wish you would've added sharing videos from gallery...
shit a headache for boost mobile never downloads my mms for nothing i hope the update fixes this +Google 
Donde están los videos y los stikers???????????
My key wish Nr. 1: The list of participants in a hangout must be maintainable by the creator of the hangout. 
Still not friendly if you use Google Voice for texting. Because I use Google Voice the way it is intended to be used, the Hangouts SMS integration has no value - it doesn't work with Google Voice.

And there is still no ability to make real phone calls in the Hangout app (with your Google Voice number). This feature has been in the iOS version of Hangouts for six months. WTF?
Decepcionante....... En ios tienen los stickers y los videos y en Android nada de nada. Nos habéis fallado. 😥
I would like to start a public Hangout on air with the app for Android!!! 
But looks like sms and hangouts are not handled transparently. Thinks the system should keep hangout as default and if the other person is not signed in, the message should be delivered as sms. 
My key wish Nr. 2: Each G+ Community should provide a default hangout. G+ should take care of keeping the participant lists identical. 
Looking forward to merged conversations. Not that it was particularly difficult to press on a drop down of options, but this change just makes it more fluid
I hope they improved the overall speed as well. The app can get quite laggy from time to time
That's not enough. I need to know which people installed Hangout on their phone... The section 'People you Hangout with' is not useful to this purpose... 
Hope to see some iOS functions in the future. Voice calls, stickers and so on. Missing invite functions for people who don't use hangouts since yet. And video and file sharing... But nice update in the right way
someone got the Apk? my play store still got hangouts 2.0. 😫
Plz add some kind of indicator which can show the people who are online or available for chat...
Can I send SMS from the desktop/Chrome using Hangouts by bouncing off my phone? Like Mighty Text lets me do? That is key!!!
Always appreciate an update; however, we really need (1) video capability, simply to keep pace with the iOS app and (2) voice messages PLEASE
Very nice, but what about google voice support?
Ok, so I guess they didn't get the memo about the calling feature iOS has had for 6 months or so. smh
I was only thinking the other day when the conversations were going to be merged. Can't wait to try out the update!
We need to be able to save multiple pictures in MMS. You can save a single picture but not when sent as more than one for some reason. Also, we need to be able send multiple pictures at once in MMS.
I really like the simplified contact list. My phone contacts are different from my Google+ contacts. 
Decepcionante... Ya lo desinstale hace tiempo y dudo que vuelva a usarlo... A nadie le interesa
Will the SMS messages merged into hangouts be available on every Hangout channel?
(In other words, will I be able to find sms messages in my gmail hangouts window if they're merged?)
Still kinda want a pop up reply
Please combined it with google voice!!! That would be amazing!
Google voice integration? iOS version also has video sending via hangouts similar to snapchat. Where are these functions for android?
Can we sign out in less than 3 clicks?? Seriously - you have to navigate in settings, then choose your account then click sign out. It should be EASIER THAN THAT.
Until Google Voice gets integrated with Hangouts, the 'combined' SMS and Chat will not work as expected.  Right now, when receiving a text over Google Voice, the text comes from a 'different number' and the name of the sender inserted in the text is the only way to know where the text came from.  Hard to explain so, just integrate Voice and Hangouts already! :p
No support for video and still waiting on the Google voice integration promised by early 2014. Did someone on the Voice team die without transitioning his stuff after that promise?
MMS photos are sending and receiving sideways from Samsung phones again. Please fix, I sent feedback through the app already.
Hello WebOS Synergy!!! It's nice to see more Palm tricks being adopted in Android. +1!!! 
Hamed K
I want voice to be default choice of my calls like Viber, this is the only reason many are not using Hangouts! This is as simple as a checkbox in the settings. 
This should be a good incremental update, but it sounds like you will still have to choose between hangouts and SMS to send a message? What would be nice is for hangouts to choose automatically based on whether or not the recipient is currently available on hangouts - somewhat similar to the way imessage will fall back to SMS automatically on iOS.
Finally. But one important thing is missing: It is not possible to make a voice only call using hangouts. There is a phone symbol for voice calls, but it only allows to dial a standard phone number. Why Google? Why?
Ouuups! And another one: When opening Hangouts on a non phone device (such as the Nexus 7), it only shows hangout conversations. All the SMS messages are not visible. Hmmm.... not really helpful, if you are missing half of the conversation. When will it be possible to show all messages?
Another one here for Google Voice integration.
OK, this is my third comment within minutes... But I have to say: For that we had to wait for such a long time to get an update on Hangouts, it is kind of weak. Here the reason why:

1.) Still no Hangouts voice only calls

2.) Tablet devices will miss SMS part of the conversations. Same on Web/Desktop

3.) Still manual decision, how you want to send messages, instead of an intelligent function that chooses Hangouts first for messages and voice and uses SMS and standard phone calls as a failback method.

4.) UI still too complex and confusing. This whole thing needs a major overhaul.
Are we able to add video messages?  Assuming not.  Womp.  I'll be happy when I can attach one, not just record one to attach within Hangouts.

Also, implement this like iphone.  If they use hangouts via phone it defaults to SMS, if they're using the phone app, default to Hangouts. 
I can't believe how little I care about this. Please for the love of god fix the google voice integration.
Can you add the ability to set a contact's mobile # as default for SMS?  
Al Cath
Will it fix badge counts on Android? Currently only iOS has them.
Most of my conversations didn't merge. Only two contacts so far. The rest still have one thread for hangouts and another for SMS to the same contact. And yes all my contacts are merged in the People app with the corresponding G+ contact. The only difference is each thread now has an icon indicating whether it's an SMS or hangouts conversation, but tapping it does nothing. 
Hey google...this is a very nice update. but for the love of God WHERE IS THE WIFI CALLING TO U.S. PHONE NUMBERS???? iOS HAS HAD THIS SINCE NOVEMBER!!!
How about Google Voice voicemail support for us Sprint+GV subscribers? I could then ditch the Voice app entirely. 
It's nice apart from the greeeeeeennn... 
How does this work for the chrome extension?
Merged conversations - at last
whatsapp like looks. lacks originality ...
I would like the online/offline contact list feature like the desktop version has and Google Talk used to have.

The reintroduction of voice calls would be good.
I love using hangouts, I hope they don't stop integrating it deeper and deeper into google. 
I like the update, but wondering why the green color wasnt added for all sender messages instead of just Hangout messages?
I see no mention of merging in Google Voice with this update. That disappoints me greatly.
I want Hangouts notifications alerts on my icons on my HTC M8. Damn you Google...errr...HTC or whoever. 
Still no available/busy status indicators, so still USELESS. 
Being a seventy-two, I like to go on tour to Europe through personal caring Travels, please inform, sorry to disturbed.
Looks good! I can't wait until the update rolls out. 
Probably the biggest issue for me is that Hangouts can't interpret more than one Google account being tied to one contact. You can have 3 phone numbers tied to one contact, but just one Google account. If you have a contact (in mycase my GF), who has personal and work Google accounts and is switching between them all day, I need to be able to have those merged into one conversation in Hangouts. Otherwise, this new feature is really incomplete.

The contacts app accepts multiple accounts just fine because it's mostly dumb. Hangouts, on the other hand, treats 2 Google accounts and a phone number as 3 separate people for all intents and purposes (as it did previously). Now if I delete my GF's work Google account from her contact, then Hangouts merges her phone number and single Google account and I can switch between them as intended. This is INSANE.

TL;DR Hangouts doesn't support multiple Google accounts tied to one contact. This makes communicating with my significant other very difficult.

EDIT: Even if you have a friend with a work and home email set and they happen to be Gmail accounts, then it identifies a G+ profile and treats them as 3 separate conversations. This is so, so stupid.
Bienvenue avec nous . Ici non plus ont ne s'ennuie pas . Merci
+Daniel Lewis Thank you for figuring this out! I was having the exact issue with my wife's contact. You're right, that's, a major oversight.

Update: Ugh! They separated again! WTF!?
How about Copy-paste function?
How can i merge? There is no option 
Is hangouts supposed to be a cruel joke by Google? Continuing emphasis on talk and voice would have been so much better than this mess,
+Google+ SMS integration was already a part of Hangouts. Have been using it for months. What's so different about this one?
+Sami Khan I quess it's merging sms and hangouts conversations between same person to one conversation.. Now they are two different conversations.
I was expecting this for the initial release. Nice it's finally here.
If it only added a search function it would actually work as a substitute of the default SMS app...
gopd to hear.,
So now will the sms messages get backed up into gmail account?!
get at me @ YaBoySpartan, I'm open for a good ol hangout discussion
+Alex Reusch this is a big disappointment, and seems such an obvious feature. Not to mention the fact that hangout conversations on a non-phone will just look rediculous.

Guess I'll just carry on with the slightly wonky third-party app solutions. 
Yeah, okay, but I still haven't gotten over your destruction of Meebo; now THAT was a service for messaging.

Mighty Text is still pretty handy too ...when will you bake SMS from my number from gmail?
EXCELLENT! Merge with Google Voice and it'll be the perfect app. 
Please add
if(userIsOnline == true)
any chance hangouts will ever be getting an unread messages badge count indicator on the icon ever?
aand still no way to unhide a contact.
Great update. It is finally my primary text messaging app. However, I can't figure out how to get notifications other then in my banner. For example, if I clear my banner, how do I know I have a text message without opening it?
How about a quick reply pulldown? 
Key West for weekend meet a Papas
Hangouts isn't a complete solution until SMS is also integrated into the desktop browser extension - you know, like Google Voice has. 
More simplification? Why don't you just remove the contact list and make all messages broadcast? Or maybe stop simplifying and start adding basic functionality back.

We want:
* User presence status (away and online at least!)
* Phone calls. iOS has this, and it's a hell of a lot more useful than all this rubbish.

I'm not happy with the argument "we want this to be the answer to everything and Uncle Google says you don't need statuses". That's why I'm an Android user and not an Apple user - because I don't want to be told what I want and need.
I agree on Google Voice integration...and the update hasn't came yet for me.
+Robert Le Blah i have it my my android with cyanogenmod. google voice dialing and sms integration. so it's there, you just don't have it on your phone. 
I'm guessing you don't, +Christian Lopez .  I have SMS integration with the stock messaging app (for TMobile texts) and I have a phone icon so I can call people from Hangouts - but it uses the TMobile cellular network to make the calls.  Not Google Voice Voip (internet) calling.  The Hangouts app on iOS can make calls over WiFi without a cellular connection (and it doesn't use minutes).

I certainly could be wrong, but I don't know how you would have it when it hasn't been released for Android yet. 

What version of Hangouts do you have?
Did you get a bootleg copy somewhere?
I don't want hangout, give me gtalk back. Where I can see if people are online or not. I don't want my gtalk mixed with my sms email etc...
+Espen Baafjord you can see if someone is online. Bubble turns green when they're on and gray when they're off.
Wats the whole point of putting this on
+Chad Bordes I don't think anyone can send MMS over wifi.  As far as I know when you send an MMS from Hangouts to a phone number, it uses your phones native texting ability - which is over the cellular network.  The Hangouts app is just taking over the interface.  

You should be able to send a photo to someone else using the Hangouts app, over wifi
Google please add black/dark theme. How hard can it be? I don't like android forcing white color just like Iphone. Android is supposed to give me control to configured everything like I want, right?
My outgoing messages aren't green.  Is there a setting that I am mising?
Really disappointed to see the telephone symbol isn't for voice-only hangouts. Not everyone has speedy broadband / 4G. We use a satellite broadband supplier and whilst we can get 20Mb/s, the latency is preventing the video hangouts from connecting at all. Skype video and voice work, but are just naff.
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