Communicate your way with Google Chat!

Last year Google announced that classic Hangouts would be replaced by Google Chat. We’re excited to share that this transition will begin on July 29, 2020, with Chat becoming the default messaging experience for UAlberta G Suite accounts. 

Chat will also replace the classic Hangouts experience in Gmail on the web. This highly-anticipated integration will allow you to communicate seamlessly, without the disruption of switching tabs.

Chat in Gmail

What can you do with Google Chat?

Chat makes it easy to communicate with team members individually or as a group. From direct messages to group conversations in dedicated virtual rooms, Chat helps teams get things done by providing a central place to discuss and collaborate efficiently on specific topics. 

Explore some of the features:

  • Communicate seamlessly to your team and external people from wherever you are, using Chat across all your devices (Gmail on the web,, or Android and iOS apps)
  • Brainstorm ideas with your team in Rooms (support up to 8,000 members), and discuss multiple subjects at the same time with conversation threads
  • Search across chat threads with the power of Google, making it easy to find what you need (e.g. videos, documents, presentations, and more), when you need it
  • Start an impromptu video meeting with your team or others by adding a Meet video session
  • Share documents, presentations, images, and more with all participants in the chat or room
  • Save time with smart reply suggestions, add emojis and reactions, forward a message to your Gmail inbox, and even more

What about classic Hangouts and old messages?

You will be able to continue recent conversations (direct messages) from classic Hangouts in Google Chat without interruption. All previous chat history will also be accessible in Gmail. 

Group messages from classic Hangouts (including history) will not be migrated to Google Chat but will remain available from the classic Hangouts web interface ( for a limited time during Google’s transition period. The classic Hangouts bot in Chat will also notify you of missed group messages from any external people or organizations using classic Hangouts.

The mobile applications for classic Hangouts will stop working on July 29, 2020, and people will be prompted to download to the Google Chat app (Android and iOS).

Note: although Google Chat is currently available to use, the Google Chat in Gmail feature will be rolling out gradually over 24 hours, and may not be immediately visible in all accounts.

Keep an eye on IST’s G Suite news to learn the latest tips, tricks, and updates for UAlberta G Suite. Additional information can be found at Get started with Google Chat