After the official launch of video calling app Duo last month, tech giant Google has now launched a smart messaging app called Allo that it hopes will rival WhatsApp, Facebook’s Messenger and Apple’s iMessage.
Boasting of a built-in search engine, the new standalone messaging app has Google Assistant integration and uses the phone number as the primary user identification method. Moreover, it allows users to link their Google account to the app.
Another feature that makes Allo different from other messaging apps is that it comes with numerous emojis and custom stickers suitable for users based on their region.
The Google Assistant integration allows users to initiate Google searches by just typing ‘@google search’ followed by the search query.
With this, users need not leave the chat window for searching information related to the ongoing conversation.
With Google Assistant interaction, users can also search for top restaurants in the area or movie timings. It can also be called upon to provide directions, topical information such as news and weather, and in-message games.
While these features make Allo, which is available for iOS and Android users, interesting enough to compete with WhatsApp and Messenger, the app lacks features like document sharing and calling, which are there in WhatsApp.