Allo there mate. The messaging app is here. Google has officially launched Allo today, as was previously reported by multiple leakers. Allo brings along some exciting new features, but also includes support for one good old feature, SMS.
Yes, Allo does support SMS messaging, in addition to instant messaging over WiFi/data.
But what makes Google Allo special, is that it is smart because it comes integrated with Google Assistant. This feature helps you by providing useful information, by using contextual suggestions. It allows you to reply to messages quickly by predicting an answer. And this even works when someone sends you a photo, to which will let you reply with an emoji.
In fact, when we tested Allo, the app suggested replies for almost every message, which made it so convenient, that I didn’t even have to type much. Allo supports quick reply from the notification bar, even on Android 6.0 Marshmallow. And quick reply includes suggestions, emoji suggestions too.
Allo uses adaptive learning to help you chat more quickly and efficiently, so the more you use it, the better it will get. So if you use emojis a lot, it will suggest emojis, if you don’t, it will suggest text replies.
Text messages can be resized too. To enlarge or shrink your text size, drag the send button up or down.
This also works with emojis. Resizing emojis is really cool.
But why limit yourself with emojis, when you can use stickers? There are a couple of dozen sticker packs to choose from.
Messages in Allo are encrypted using TLS, the app cranks up security by a notch with an Incognito mode, for secret chats. These chats are end-to-end encrypted and offers discreet notifications and message expiration.
To start an incognito chat, tap the message icon in the bottom right corner of the main screen. To set an expiration time for messages, tap the timer icon in an incognito chat.
Now, let’s talk about Google Assistant. You can bring up the bot by typing @ or @google, after which you have to tap on its name. Type in a query and Google Assistant will reply to you with useful information. You can ask it about movies playing nearby, the weather, the news, or even tell a joke.
The Assistant also works in group chats, and can be used for making travel plans.
The @google bot did get a bit weird when I asked it to tell a joke. It didn’t stop with one reply and instead sent three messages, a joke, a video and a random fact.
It’s quite a chatty bot. But it’s still in preview, so it will get better. This is definitely going to take on WhatsApp and Telegram heads on.
Google Allo uses your phone number to sign up, but it still is tied to your Google account, as you can see from the app’s settings page.
Google Allo video:
Download Google Allo from the Play Store.
[appbox googleplay com.google.android.apps.fireball]
We were able to download it, so the app must be rolling out worldwide.