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article imageGoogle Allo is finally available on the web… sort of

By James Walker     Aug 15, 2017 in Technology
Google Allo now has a web version, almost a year after its launch. The long-requested site is rolling out now but only some users will benefit from it. The app's currently limited to Android devices and the Chrome browser, restricting its usefulness.
Allo hasn't had the smoothest first year of life. Its lack of features and poor transition experience from older Google messaging apps has led to a sluggish adoption rate. Google's inability to add missing areas back at a timely rate hasn’t helped the matter but today the company finally launched the first version of a web client.
Allo on the web works differently to messaging services like Facebook Messenger or Google's own Hangouts. Like WhatsApp Web, the service relies on an initial connection to your phone to work. You get started by opening Allo on your phone and scanning a QR code presented by the website. After that, the web app retrieves all your conversations and contacts.
Google Allo
Google Allo
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You can send basic text messages as well as stickers, emoji and Allo smart replies. Google's also included Assistant support, marking the first time it has been available to desktop users. Once you're past the initial configuration, everything should stay in sync between your PC and your phone.
There are some missing features though. You can't mute group chats, add or remove members from a group, back up your information or block contacts. The way the app works also prevents you from switching between Google accounts or even deleting a conversation.
It's also got the same big caveat as WhatsApp Web: you need to have your phone turned on and connected to the Internet for it to work at all. If your phone's battery dies, Allo for web will go offline too.
Allo is a new messaging app that also comes complete with the Google assistant  so you can interact ...
Allo is a new messaging app that also comes complete with the Google assistant, so you can interact with it directly in your chats, either one-on-one or with friends.
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There's another problem as well. At today's launch, Allo for web only supports Android devices. iOS users will need to keep on waiting until Google's ready to expand the service. On the desktop side, Allo requires you to use Google's own Chrome browser. If you normally browse with Firefox, Safari or Edge, you'll need to fire up Chrome or opt to continue without Allo web.
The launch of Allo's web client is a step forward for the beleaguered messaging app. It carries its own feature limitations though, hindering its potential in the same way Allo itself has suffered. Although the web app should satisfy some users, Allo's still got a long way to go before it catches up to the popularity of Facebook Messenger, WhatsApp and Google's own Hangouts.
More about allo, google allo, Messaging, Google, Android
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