In a new report released by 9to5Google, Google is said to be enhancing it's Hangout product by integrating VoIP calling into the cross-platform communication app.
Google Hangouts recently removed its Android messaging app for SMS and text in the most recent system release and had retired both both Messenger and Talk.
The report speculates the upgraded Google Hangouts will allow users to make free VoIP phone calls much like users are capable of doing through Gmail on the web. This is a move that VoIP carriers are very much opposed to because it undermines their own product offerings.
Google has a history of consolidating or eliminating its apps that don't perform up to expectations or are functionally redundant. A few examples in recent memory include iGoogle, Google Reader and Google Wave.
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