Although Google Allo may not have a user base as large as Facebook Messenger or WhatsApp, it has some of my favorite features of any messaging platform – one of which is Smart Replies. Smart Replies are those little bubbles under your Allo conversations that let you send off automated responses with just the tap of a button, and they're now coming to Android Messages.
This is something that was first spotted in Android Messages back in September of last year, but the official Project Fi account just announced that it was now officially available for folks to use.
If you've never used Allo, Smart Replies are actually pretty neat. For example, if you get a text from a friend saying there's a new coffee shop they want to check out, you'll see little bubbles underneath that message with responses such as "Where's it at?", "Cool!", and "👍." The Smart Replies you see are generated based on the conversation at hand, and this contextual layer to them actually makes it a pretty useful feature that I loved messing with on Allo.
The Project Fi Twitter account says that Smart Replies are coming to its subscribers starting today, January 24, but if you're on another carrier, you might not be able to take advantage of this quite yet. It's unclear at the moment if Smart Replies will work on other carriers with an app update to Android Messages or if it's reliant on the RCS standard, but we've reached out to Google for further clarification and will update this article when we hear back.