A new Google Hangouts Chrome extension experience

Last month in Google Hangouts, we announced that better group chat controls were now available on Android, iOS, and the web in order to make it a simpler and more consistent experience joining group chats with your team. In following this move towards consistency, on August 31, 2016, a new version of the Google Hangouts Chrome extension will be made available to new users. As we continue to iterate and add in features that help users communicate in group chats, the new experience brings together multiple chat windows into one and makes it easier to see more chat content.
Existing users of the Chrome extension will be able to opt into the new experience on August 31, 2016, which has functional parity with the current experience. Users will have the option to remain on the current experience until October 16, 2016, at which point all users will be automatically updated to the new experience.

In order to make this a smooth transition, we’re updating the Google Hangouts Help Center articles with the latest changes, nested in the Hangouts Chrome desktop app section.

Action Suggested
  • If you have people using the existing Google Hangouts Chrome extension in your organization, share the Help Center articles above to prepare them for this change.
  • If you use Chrome Management (available to all Google Apps customers) to centrally manage installation of the extension, please see our Help Center article for more information.

As a reminder, the new Google Hangouts Chrome extension will become the default experience on October 16, 2016.

Launch Details
Release track:
Launching to both Rapid release and Scheduled release on August 31, 2016 as the default for new users, and opt-in for existing users. The new extension will become the default for all users on October 16, 2016.

Rollout pace:
Full rollout (1-3 days for feature visibility)

All Hangouts Chrome extension end users

Change management suggested/FYI

More Information
Chrome Web Store
Help Center: Hangouts Chrome desktop app
Administrators only: Set Chrome policies for users