Google Tests Live Chat in Business Search Results

Rhett Pardon

MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif. — Google is exploring new uses for its Hangouts chat infrastructure and is testing out a service that incorporates live chat in search results.

Google’s new experimental chat feature offers a direct text-based line of communication by using a live-chat button on the local search button for Hangout chats.

Whether Hangouts chats will become a standard addition to search results is unclear, but any business that deals with the public could benefit with the dedicated messenger.

“The service resembles Path Talk’s direct-messaging platform with local businesses, but incorporates its service right into the business listing search result card it shows on, which also shows you details including price level, address, map location, phone number, opening hours, ratings and reviews,” said Tech Crunch, which first reported about the new service.