This could be Hangouts 4.0, the next major Android update for the messaging service
The Hangouts app on Android has been badly in need of an overhaul for a while. Google has been working towards a full Material Design overhaul since last September, since it eschewed the drab gray hue of the previous version of the app for a more Material-esque green. Since then, we’ve seen little improvement in the app. It doesn’t meet Google’s own Material standards in its current state – and, for context, it was more than a year ago that the Android L developer preview was first launched. Finally, with this new leaked Hangouts 4.0 build (courtesy of Android Police), we’re starting to get a look at where Material will go in Hangouts’s next update.
So in terms of what’s actually new with this update, UI is basically the highlight. What used to once be a bit of a dumpster fire is quite a bit more polished now. Tabs are done away with – unless, of course, you have Hangouts Dialer installed for use with Google Voice – which makes for a cleaner design. There’s also a floating action bar in the bottom, which reveals multiple other “Quick Dial” actions. This makes messaging and calling quite a bit more convenient. Inside conversations themselves, messages are now rounded – another nod to design – and there are dedicated options for emoji, location sharing, stickers, and sending/taking pictures. You can also share your status as you can see below.
There’s no word on when the update will roll out, but if it’s in this late a stage of development, the hope is that the release date will be soon.
Source: Android Police