Google Allo... What is it missing?

"The Messenger"
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The announcement of Allo at Google I/O 2016 has stirred a mix of responses. It is undoubtedly a smart messaging app with incredible features but does it have the right mix of features that could be crucial to making it stick?

Usual chat app features 📱

Message by signing up with your phone number and if you want to you can connect your Google account.

Google commissioned artists to work on the Stickers and you will also find all the expected Emojis.

Send photos with a difference- Allo allows you to doodle on and annotate your photos before you send them to your friends and family.

Google assistant 💁

Converse with Google by asking @google any question. Just like interacting with your Google search engine but within the Allo app. However Google assistant also integrates with your conversations with friends. The assistant can recognise what you and your friends are discussing and even use open table to help you book a table for the restaurant you had decided on.

Smart reply suggestions 🎓

Allo will analyse your content (both text and pictures) to provide suggestions for your reply. From a picture of a dog or what your friend is having for breakfast, Google suggests that Allo will provide a selection of options for you to reply, simply with a tap on the screen.

Incognito mode 👻

Like Telegram, Allo has a security feature that works the same as in Chrome. End-to-end encryption and once you delete your conversation it is... Gone forever.

But what doesn't it have? 👪 👯 💫

Do you have room for another app? How long is it going to take for your friends and family to get this one too?

This is where Facebook Messenger really conquers all by again being positioned within our social network on a platform we already have and also use frequently. With more and more bots being developed for messengers the plethora of choice compared with Allo's singular assistant might also be a disadvantage to Google's new app.

It will be interesting to see if Allo can gain any of this precious usage time that other messaging apps are already dominating, as each app responds to the AI and chatbot capabilities.

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Kristy Burden
Kristy Burden

Former Head of Marketing and Communication at oratio