Today Google is releasing the first big update for its Allo chat app for Android. Allo 2.0 is currently in the process of rolling out through the Play Store. As always with Google app updates, it may take a few days before every single Allo user receives the new version. And depending on where you live, you may not get the new iteration if you go and hit Install right now. Fret not, though, for Allo 2.0 is headed to everyone.
This release brings with it a bunch of new features. The app now has a splash screen when you start it, and it supports direct share - meaning you can directly share stuff from the Android share menu to the contacts you most frequently chat with (without first needing to select the app).
More importantly, Allo now supports the split-screen multitasking mode introduced in Android 7.0 Nougat. It's also gained direct replies in notifications, as well as a Monochrome theme which you can enable in Settings. App shortcuts are available when you long-press the Allo icon in Android 7.1, and if you're rocking the newest release of the OS you'll also get GIFs inside the keyboard. Inserting these in Allo is now a go. Finally, you now get direct voice recognition when you're chatting with the Google Assistant.