What is Allo ? An Alternative to whatsapp

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What is Allo ? An Alternative to whatsapp

What according to you is the biggest Tech Giant. Is it Facebook …. Microsoft or Google ? Hard to figure out !! Competition amongst them is no less than wrath of the titans. Whatsapp has been an integral part of our lives for quite some time now. No other messaging app has come even closer to challenge its domination and undoubtedly it has the largest user base at present.

To Challenge this domination, now we have Google Allo.

What is Google Allo ?

Allo is an instant messaging service (similar to whatsapp, hike, telegram etc) launched by google on 21 Sep 16. Well not just an instant messaging service, there is something more to it.

In the official blog Google says “Google Allo can help you make plans, find information, and express yourself more easily in chat. And the more you use it, the more it improves over time.”

How does it Work ?

Nothing different from the concept of whatsapp. However,you can even send SMS using Allo to people in your contact list who have not installed Allo.

What are the new Features included in Google Allo ?

Smart reply

This feature is based on the concept of machine learning. Machine learning, in short, is the process of teaching a Computer to respond to a scenario in real time or predicting something. For details refer wikipedia.

It suggest a reply to the last message, which can be selected from a few options. What a relief isn’t it ! Especially when you don’t know what to answer, this can come real handy.

In its official blog google says “With Smart Reply, you can respond to messages with just a tap, so you can send a quick “yup” in response to a friend asking “Are you on your way?” Smart Reply will also suggest responses for photos. If your friend sends you a photo of their pet, you might see Smart Reply suggestions like “aww cute!” And whether you’re a “haha” or 🙂 kind of person, Smart Reply will improve over time and adjust to your style.

Google Assistant

What is Allo - Google AssistantIt is a conversational virtual assistant who can converse with you just like an obedient assistant. It can be seen as an extension of Google Now. However, it can engage in a two-way conversation, using Google’s natural language processing algorithm.

Just type “What you can do ? “ on google assistant and it well tell you what all it has to offer. Google Assistant serves as an substitute for google search. You can ask any question to it and it will present you with an appropriate answer.

So, now if you are chatting with your friend and need to surf something on the web. You don’t need to minimize your messaging app and launch your browser to search. Just ask google assistant and don’t let your friend get a feeling of being treated as second priority.

Whisper Shout

It will enable the user to increase or decrease the size of a message to represent volume.

Incognito mode

What is Allo - Incognito ModeLike whatsapp end to end encryption which created a lot of heated debates on its pros and cons. Allo does not have end to end encryption enabled by default. In incognito mode, user get end-to-end encryption, message expiration and discreet notifications.

In simple terms, you get following features.

(a) Your chat gets end to end encrypted. Nobody (not even google) can decrypt it.

(b) You can specify a time limit for which your messages should be alive on your phone and google server. After the specified time the chat gets deleted permanently from everywhere.

How to access incognito mode in Allo ?

Tap the new message icon on bottom right.

Observe the top three options

  • Start group chat
  • Start incognito chat
  • Google Assistant

Tap on Start incognito chart

Tap on the name of friend you want to chat with.

Tap on the Clock symbol on top right to adjust the expiration time of your messages.

Your messages will get deleted once the expiration time elapses.

Similarly, your friend on other end can also set a custom expiration time for the messages that he is sending to you.

How is it different from Whatsapp ?

From Privacy point of view it is not as good as whatsapp. So Should you worry ? Absolutely No. User data will persist on the google server until the user actively deletes it, giving Google default access to a full history of conversations in the app. However, messages will still be encrypted between the device and Google servers, and stored on servers using encryption that leaves the messages accessible only to Google’s algorithms.

Why does Google Allo store my messages ?

Your messages are required by google servers to support smart reply feature. As explained earlier smart reply is based on the concept of Machine Learning. In Machine Learning a Computer learns about trends and behavior from input data set (in this case, your messages) and based on this learning gives user a rich user experience.

How to download Google Allo ?

You can download Allo from Google Play Store. Download Google Allo

How to Set Up Google Allo ?

Visit Play Store. Follow on screen instruction.

Enter your mobile number when prompted.

Google will send a verification code (6 digit number) on SMS.

Enter the Verification Code and you are done.

Should I Give Google Allo a try ?

Definitely, It offers a host of features worth trying. Moreover, if we start using it, then based on user feedback, Google will further improve the product.

Let us know, what do you feel about Google Allo.

Also Read : How Whatsapp Encryption Works

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