Android users have looked on with envy at Apple’s iMessage and BlackBerry Messenger for a long time now . The world’s most popular mobile platform, unfortunately, had no native unified IM and file-sharing client that can compete with the aforementioned offerings on iOS and BB10.
However, things may be about to change. According to multiple sources, who revealed the company’s plans to Geek, Google is preparing a unified messaging app that will bring the company’s many IM and communication platforms into a single service. The service is expected to be called Babble.
All under one roof
In Android, there are a bunch of Google communications platforms that don’t interact with each other very well, but theoretically they could as Google handles the development of all these services. Google Talk, Hangouts, Voice, Google + Messenger, Chat for Drive collaboration, and the Google + chat client all are available for use, but do not work in synch. A cross-platform solution would help Google compete with the likes of iMessage and BBM, while also delivering what Android fans have been clamouring for, for a long time. Babble is being built from scratch by Google to bring its various clients under one roof.
Babble would function as one overarching client that will combine the unique feature sets of each of Google’s existing offerings into one package. Right now, if users want to share photos over a Google messaging service, they have to choose the G+ Messenger while video chat is handled by the Hangouts component. With Babble – all these functions are possible through one app and conversations will be threaded across all the existing services.
The individual services are expected to be pushed onto the single Babble platform, and users can access the same chat window across all of Google’s products with the features and functionality not different anywhere. Reportedly, the Babble service will be available for both Android and Chrome OS users, which could mean that many of the company’s core services will be brought under one development programme for both platforms.
Pulling together all of the existing products under a single branding and platform could possible have been in the work for a long time. Most of Google’s chat services, GTalk for example, have been based on the open chat platform XMPP. The flexibility and scalability of the service has enabled Google to push out new features regularly to its services. However, the company recently decided to ban non-native XMPP requests, which many believe to be the first sign of Google working on a closed communications platform, of which iMessage and BBM are the most prime examples. That’s a move that has not gone down too well with developers and power users, but Geek’s source says that the quality and performance of Babble will be more than enough to make most users happy.
There’s no official release date for Babble, but we venture that the Mountain View company will announce it at Google I/O in May this year.
Publish date: March 19, 2013 11:16 am| Modified date: January 7, 2014 11:50 am