Google Hangouts SMS support on Android is no longer a dream. Vic Gundotra announced a number of improvements that have been made to Hangouts, today. Improvements include support for SMS, location sharing and animated GIFs. It was previously rumored that support for SMS messages in Hangouts will come with Android 4.4 KitKat, but evidently Google doesn’t want us to keep waiting. Unfortunately, Google Voice still hasn’t been integrated in the Android app. Nevertheless, users will no longer need to use the stock SMS app, texts will go through Hangouts exactly the way they do through the stock app. Location can be shared through just one touch of a button that’s placed beside the one used to share photos.
Google has also made some improvements to Hangouts apart from its mobile app. Auto enhance has been added to video calls, the feature automatically adjusts contrast and brightness levels to provide clear video. Moreover, all video calls made through Hangouts will be in HD, regardless of the mobile or desktop device being used. Hangouts on Air receives a couple of updates as well. Once a broadcast is scheduled, a dedicated landing page is created that is integrated with Google+ events, and it lists RSVPs and even includes a countdown timer. Pre-show Q&A sessions and trailers can even be run. Some changes have been made to the user interface as well, which now lets hosts adjust audio or even kick people from the session. The updated Google Hangouts app will be rolled out over the next few days, whereas updates to Hangouts on Air will take several weeks to go live.
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