Rumor has it that Google will launch Google Allo, a new instant messaging mobile application, in the Play Store any time this week. This was the app announced alongside Duo during the company's three-day I/O Developer conference last May.
For those wondering why Google will release another messaging app when it already has Hangouts and Duo, here are some unique features.
First, Allo is described as a smart messaging system that features a Google assistant function. The app can purportedly answer questions and find information in addition to its messaging capability. This could be powered by the technology behind Google's voice search that can be triggered by saying "OK, Google" in Android devices.
Google Allo is also distinguished by what it seemed to be an ability to respond to a conversation without the need to type words. The application can offer a range of replies for the user to choose from through the app's capability to learn user response style. This will work on messages that include either text message or media content such as photos. Google said that the idea is to keep the conversation going.
Google Allo also aims to introduce changes in the way instant messaging transpires. Rather than the use of all caps to indicate shouting, for instance, users could "whisper" or "shout" messages by expressing them in small or large font sizes with a quick swipe.
Finally, users can reportedly rely on its Incognito mode to hold secure conversations and expiring messages. This is powered by an end-to-end encryption feature similar to the ones seen in the Telegram and Signal messaging apps. There is also a feature called private notifications, which helps users "to hide chats from shoulder surfers."
Popular features seen in other mobile messaging platforms will also make their appearances. These include sticker support. Google has said that the app has exclusive stickers created by independent artists around the world.
While Allo is not yet available, it has already gained 4.8 rating in the Play Store. This is due to the app's availability for pre-registration, which allows users to leave reviews without using the app. Ratings could fall when the application starts rolling out.
The rumors about the exact Allo launch is still sketchy. The Twitter post of noted mobile tech leaker Evan Blass referring to this week's launch, for example, has been filled with numerous speculations from the public. Some of these cite a potential Sept. 20 release.
Hello, Allo (launches this week).
— Evan Blass (@evleaks) September 18, 2016