It's hard to imagine writing about Allo without talking about stickers, and as the title suggests, this post isn't going to change that. Version 17 just started rolling out, but it looks to be basically the same on the surface. At least no significant changes have turned up for me. However, a teardown of the apk shows that there are even more sticker-related improvements on the horizon. Read More
Google's newest messenger app, Allo, was released about a year ago. The app's momentum dropped shortly after release, but that hasn't stopped Google from continuing to improve it. At long last, Allo has gained a web client, but has it been worth the wait?
Setting it up
Unlike Hangouts and similar cloud-based messaging services, your phone acts as the intermediary between your computer and Allo. Anything you do (send/receive a message, start a new chat, etc) is actually performed by your phone, which sends the response back to your computer. As such, your phone will need a working internet connection for the Allo web client to work. Read More
Say what you will about Allo, good or bad, but don't suggest that the developers aren't busy with new features. Each update typically brings some change to the interface, and sometimes it happens even between updates. The latest example is a new edit button that now appears at the top right of images and custom stickers (not regular stickers) in the chat window. It can be used to quickly take an image from chat, make changes, and post it for others in the conversation to see. Read More
A new version of Allo began rolling out yesterday, but unlike so many previous releases, this one wasn't preceded by any Twitter announcements from the developer team. That's not too surprising because this looks more like a maintenance release. However, there was one subtle enhancement that's definitely worth pointing out: Allo now integrates with contacts on your phone so you can quickly jump to the app and start a conversation. A teardown of the apk revealed that most of the other changes are in service to the upcoming launch of an Allo web client, which had been examined in detail with a teardown of v14. Read More
Allo is actually a really nice application, but there are simply too many missing features for me to use it in any meaningful capacity. One of those missing features is a desktop client, which was first revealed by Nick Fox (Google VP of Communications) in February. In May, he tweeted that the web client was still "a month or two from public release." It's been about a month and a half since that statement, but the Allo desktop client is still a ways off. Read More
Google Allo looks to be garnering some love today with the addition of document and file sharing support. It has been six months since Allo's initial release on Android where the lack of file sharing was a gaping hole in the app's features. While today we thankfully see this issue addressed, better late than never is something many of us Google fans will be all too familiar with. Read More
Take a look at the Play Store's top free apps chart today, January 31st, and you'll notice that Google Allo does not appear on said chart in the top 500 listings (technically, top 540 - I'm not sure when they grew the list, but yeah). It seems that Allo, based on App Annie's historical data, has actually fallen out of the top 500 several times in recent weeks, but this is the first incidence we've noticed. Read More
The response to Google Allo has been... cold, to put it gently. For every user who appreciates the clean break Google made with its past messaging apps and the mobile-first approach it took, there are dozens if not hundreds of users who are vocal about every single feature that Allo is missing and that needs to be implemented before the app is viable as a messenger for them.
That cold response is behind Allo's sudden extinction from the Play Store's top lists and the super slow rise of its download numbers. A couple of weeks ago, David pointed out that while the app reached 5M downloads in 5 days, it still sat between 5M and 10M two whole months later, signaling a really slow uptake on the app after the initial rush was over. Read More
On September 28th, almost two months ago to the day, Allo co-lead Justin Uberti announced the app had achieved a staggering five-million downloads in just five days since its launch. It was impressive, though not exactly unexpected for a major Google app debut. Now, once at the top of the Play Store's app rankings, Allo sits below position #200, and shows few signs of momentum.
The app's download count remains at the 5,000,000-10,000,000 milestone it achieved back at the end of September, meaning that in over sixty days Allo has not managed to achieve again what it did in the first five it was available. Read More