If you are using Google Workspace, the traditional Hangouts messaging service will begin to expire next month as part of the Google Chat migration. Beginning March 22nd, Google will make Google Chat the default chat application, indicating that users who try to visit Hangouts in Gmail on the web or use the old Hangouts mobile apps will be forwarded to Chat.
The transition from Google Hangouts to Google Chat is the latest stage in Google’s ever-evolving communications strategy, which becomes increasingly perplexing the further you learn about it. This transition began in June 2020 and is focused on the messaging service that is linked with Gmail. Google Chat should not be confused with GChat, the unofficial name for Google Talk, which was discontinued in 2017 and substituted with Hangouts.
Except in “a few unusual circumstances,” Google claims, existing Hangouts conversation history will move over to Chat. Although there is no way to opt out of the change, Google says the hangouts.google.com domain will remain operational.
For the time being, only Workspace users, as well as older G Suite Basic and Business subscribers, are affected by this change. It applies to people who use Google’s services as part of a business or corporation, in other words. However, as 9to5Google points out, Google has previously stated that free Google Account users will experience the same change as Workspace users.