Google has so far had an SMS for Hangouts feature which let users receive messages from Google+ Hangouts in the form of an SMS. This feature is separate from its Hangouts Android app with SMS integration. This feature was apparently aimed at feature-phone users from developing markets, where internet penetration may be lower than the rest of the world. Today, Google has discontinued this service, which many people did not even know about anyway.
This does not mean any inconvenience for Android users, however. They will still be able to get their Hangouts instant messages sent to them over SMS. Only those without a Smartphone or a data connection in the emerging markets may face a problem. One more reason for the discontinuation may be that Google was not able to find enough users for this feature.
Greenbot says : “Of course, there’s a chance you don’t use Google Hangouts at all. Unless you have a Nexus or Google Play Edition Android phone, you already have a dedicated messaging application, even though you can integrate SMS into Hangouts. Plus, on non-Nexus or GPE phones, one needs to go out of their way to enable this feature.”
AndroidHeadlines says : “For those of you in these countries where this feature was really popular, you may see less Hangouts notifications, it all depends on how good of a connection you have. But it shouldn’t be an issue, actually. So it’s not what we wanted to hear from Google. As we are still awaiting the Google Voice integration into Hangouts, which should happen soon. But there’s changes afoot here with Hangouts. Hopefully we see more soon with Hangouts and Google Voice though.”
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