Shared lists and games might be coming to Allo

Google Assistant in Allo
Google Assistant in Allo (Image credit: Android Central)

As much as I love using Allo, Google's messaging service is still nowhere near as popular as WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, etc. Allo already has a lot of compelling features that are a lot of fun to use if you actually give the platform a chance, and with the recent discovery of "Allo Activities", it looks like that point will soon be even more prominent.

The team at Android Police recently got their hands on screenshots and a video of these Activities, and while the presence of these new features has yet to be confirmed by Google, everything we're seeing here does look legit. So, what exactly are Allo Activites?

Whenever this is introduced, a new + icon will appear in your Allo toolbar above the area where you compose a message, and tapping on it will reveal various activities that you can launch. Tapping on this will reveal options for attaching a file or sending your location to whoever you're talking to, and while these two features have been present in Allo for some time, there's a lot more here that we've never before seen.

One of the new activities is titled as "Shared List", and as you can probably guess, this is a built-in list within Allo where you can add items to share between you and the person/people in your conversation. Although you can already share to-do lists with people through a variety of other apps, having the ability to do so right within Allo is a nice touch for those that use it.

Along with the Shared List, Allo Activities will also introduce games for the first time in Allo history. There appear to be four games, including Quick, Draw!, Group Chess, Pet Hotel, and Toadal Pondage. They look to be fairly simple, and after tapping on whatever one you'd like to play, it'll load within your conversation before popping up.

We don't know when Allo Activites will officially launch (or if they ever will), but this seems like a smart move on Google's part. As solid of a messaging service as Allo already is, there's still not a big enough argument to be made for getting people to convert from platform's they're already comfortable with. However, if Google plays its cards right with Activites, it could turn Allo into more than basic messaging. Stay tuned.

Allo: Everything you need to know

Joe Maring

Joe Maring was a Senior Editor for Android Central between 2017 and 2021. You can reach him on Twitter at @JoeMaring1.

  • I love Allo. It's really fun. I wish more people used it.
  • Love Allo to can't get anyone on it due to no SMS service for people not using ALO
  • Great! Yet another Google product offering a shared list that is isolated from all the other shared lists on Google products....
  • Pay Apple to for iMessage access! It doesn't matter how good Allo is, no one uses it. iPhone users are on iMessage. Android users mostly use SMS unless they are not a Luddite and use WhatsApp with those friends who know how to download and set up an app.
  • Apple won't ever let others into imessage, it's a big part of how they sell phones. They've made exclusivity one of their big selling points.
  • Add SMS integration or it is a non starter for a lot of us. You know how to do it because you did it with Hangouts.
  • that's what everyone is asking for in the Allo app... Google is so incompetent when it comes to messaging apps jeez..
  • Awesome. Allo is excellent. Queue the “I need SMS” yapping...
  • you are lying if you don't believe they should add SMS
  • I don't know anyone who doesn't use SMS. IMs is nice but nothing beats the reliability and cheapness of SMS for now.
  • Here in ther Netherlands, and in most of europe if im not wrong, IM is 1000x cheaper than SMS! Here they got a lot of bundles like "4000mb OR SMS" and as an average text on allo, whatsapp, or Facebook messenger is significantly less than 1Mb it is actually cheaper to use those services instead of sms
  • You're right, my European friends have told me this. They either use iPhones or Whatsapp because it's cheaper with Euro carriers pricing. In the US for better or worse SMS is available to all, virtual free at this point but lacks all the nice free IM brings to the table.
  • Games.. so they're turning into the bloated mess that is Facebook Messenger..
  • As long as it's not a cluttered mess as Facebook Messenger is, I'm game. Lack of SMS integration and less users remains a huge deal breaker though. Why hasn't Google Marketed the jack outta it, I wonder?! Allo needs to be a priority to them. Got potential.
  • Allo needs Google Assistant level marketing and then it might pop.
  • How about being able to edit Google Keep documents? I can share but nothing else
  • Great to see newer features, but other IMs have beat em to it. Google really needs to amp it's marketing for Allo. Let's start with preinstalling it on all things running Android with a Software update. Make it uninstallable lol?
  • I never thought I'd be asking for bloatware, but I totally agree
  • "That'll be 100,000,000,000 Euro, please." -European Union regulators
  • Duo certainly comes preinstalled these days. Either that or Google needs a pretty compelling list of reasons for users to go GAGA over getting it.
  • No SMS is a deal breaker