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Google Babel Makes First Appearance With More 1990s Emoticons Than You Can Count


After we first outed the name Google Babel last week, and the new unified chat app by Google hit internal testers, we figured it was only a matter of time before the first shots of it emerged. Thanks to TechRadar, those first shots may have arrived today. Someone tell Google that the 90s want their emoticons back. 

First, the name “Babel” is seen once again thanks to the shot below which shows a message of “What do you think of Babel in Gmail?” as the user hovers over a feedback button. I’m sure this could be faked by any novice web developer, but since it was included in a batch of photos that would likely take hours to create, we’ll give them the benefit of the doubt. Just keep in mind that as our own Tim loves to say, “Nothing is confirmed.”


Next, in the screenshot at the very top, we’re seeing the first look at the UI of Babel while in Gmail or potentially Google+ for that matter. The conversations appear more threaded than in the past and include contact thumbnails. We’re seeing a Hangout button, option to add more contacts to the conversation, a settings button, camera button, and a collapsable bar that gives you the ultimate-emoticon list of all time. We’re seriously seeing six tabs of different emoticons. I know Google has become a fan of emoticons again, but do we really need flags, various animals, smiley emotions, and emoticons with food themes? Ugh, Emoji. Moving on.

According to TechRadar’s source who they question a bit throughout their post, Google+ integration is a must if you are looking to send photos over Babel. This isn’t surprising in the least, as Google has been pushing G+ as a product heavily since it launched.


So this is essentially what we expected from Babel, isn’t it? A revamped chat UI that works across multiple services including Gmail and Google+. What we need now, is a look at the actually Android app. Or do we think Google Talk will die and we’ll all be forced into Google+ to carry on our Google Talk conversations? Oh, how scary of a thought is that?

Via:  TechRadar

  • codemonkey85

    Well, that’s a pretty good reason to drop the service instead of expanding it.

  • hactorrose

    @Loise, you make $27h thats great going girl good for you! My story is that I quit working at shoprite to work online, seriously I couldn’t be happier I work when I want and where I want. And with a little effort I easily bring in $35h and sometimes even as much as $85h…heres a good example of what i’m doing, http://www.hdcash1.com

  • Larizard

    that screenshot showing Google+ as a requirement to send a photo is scaring me, not because of the requirement, but because it mentions Google TALK:

    “Send photos with Google Talk when you upgrade to Google+”

    You know what that means? If they are not killing off Talk, then they are most likely not killing off Voice, Messenger, or even Messaging. It’s looking like BABEL is not a new integrated messaging service or app. Project Babel, much like Project Butter, is an internal name of an INITIATIVE to allow cross-platform communication between the plethora of Google Communication devices.

    Not a new app; not a new service. Besides, “Babel” does not sound like a Google product at all.

    • Jeremy Couch

      I hope your wrong and this actually means the new unified app will be called Talk instead of messenger or babel. Talk is the best name for it imo.

      • How about Huddle? I don’t know why they did away with that name, I liked it

        • Jeremy Couch

          If I remember right some startup had a similar service with the name Huddle. As much as I am looking forward to this I really don’t care what they do or what they call it as long as they don’t ax Voice.

    • You know I thought the same thing when I saw that screenshot, but I hope we’re both wrong it has to be something COMPLETELY new.

  • codemonkey85

    All it needs now is gif support. Seriously, I’ll be surprised if that feature isn’t on board at launch.

  • Chris Hollenbeck

    Bet we see Mumford and Sons in their commercials…

  • Royal2000H

    Remember when ICS was supposed to bring an ultra integration of Google Voice into the OS? Here’s to hoping Key Lime Pie, through Babel, is part of the answer.

    • Steve Benson

      It did integrate the voice mail into the dialer app…but I guess it stopped there, sadly.

  • archercc

    If it doesnt I wont use it. I dont use chat apps much anymore. I SMS on mobile and that is about it. Google Voice’s Android interface is garbage and their SMS interface is just as bad on the web. If thye used this to fix that Id be joyed, otherwise I couldnt care.

    Also, add MMS to the mix for Google Voice…

    • codemonkey85

      I will grant you that Google Voice is in DIRE need of an update, but personally I still refuse to pay for SMS when I have a smartphone.

      • I AGREE!! “You’re missing out on MMS” they say, “The voice app is messy” they say, “you don’t have threaded conversations” they say. I still don’t care, the advantages of using Google Voice outweigh these minor “inconveniences”. Still I really do hope that they integrate SMS into Babel

        • Geoff Johnson

          You forgot the ability to send and receive messages when not connected to a data network, such as in poor signal areas or if you want to leave data disabled for battery reasons. There are many times when my data signal isn’t reliable enough, yet calls and texts are fine.

          • codemonkey85

            That’s a good point, although it doesn’t really apply to me where I live.

          • InyRules

            That’s why to communicate with 90% of my friends on my phone, I use GroupMe, as it is able to use both my data connection and WIFI. To message individual people, I try to use Talk as much as possible, but I have certain friends who don’t know that app even exists on their phones. I would LOVE if this had SMS integration to really keep everything in one place.

  • Agreed…. absolutely needs this.

  • If this doesn’t have Google Voice integration then it’s not going to be that groundbreaking or useful…

    • Trevor

      I still think it would be pretty useful, but it would certainly suck a fatty if Google Voice wasn’t included in this.

      • codemonkey85

        Even worse, if Google Voice is discontinued soon (hasn’t gotten much attention in a while….)

        • Trevor

          Yeah, Google has seemed to have forgotten about it. Which is a shame because Voice is such a cool concept. Hopefully they’re just trying really hard to surprise us with something awesome…

  • it wont have sms integrated because imessage technology is patented and Apple will not allow it

    • Cory

      Motorola holds a patent described as: “A plurality of messaging clients within a messaging communication system for providing continuity between the plurality of messaging clients comprising: a first messaging client, for establishing a first communication connection including a plurality of client data with a message server; and a second messaging client for receiving the plurality of client data from the first messaging client and for establishing a second communication connection including the plurality of client data with the message server.”

      • if it is true, they y Motorolla did not take Apple to court for Patent Infrigenment

        • Cory

          They did. It went before the ITC.

  • i want Google to sort out Android first specially the uselesss browser and Emojis on Android 4.2.2. then focus on something new


    I still can’t get over the name. Kinda like Netflix did Qwikster

  • Tim242

    Please Google, don’t name it Babel. It sounds terrible.

  • squrel23

    I’m curious about the very last screenshot. If it was going to be called “Babel” then wouldn’t the message say “Send photos with Babel when you upgrade to Google+”? Cause right now it still mentions Google Talk…

  • BRIM

    Boring ugly-ass UI.

    • Steve Benson

      Does it really matter? This is just the web interface. I’m sure the Android interface will be much cleaner and JB/KLP like.

  • AlphaNoble

    I honestly think that it will not catch on if doesn’t. The only reason people use iMessage is because it does it for them. There is no user action involved that would be different from sending an SMS. If it doesn’t integrate SMS, I fear it will be nothing more than a google kakau/whatsapp/_insert_IM_service_here. Without SMS integration, would any more people use it than google talk?

    • Good_Ole_Pinocchio

      Problem with iMessage is that is isn’t cross platform. That’s what google is going for here.

      • codemonkey85

        Honestly, all it would take for me is Google Voice integration… there’s your SMS.

        Of course, I suppose that would be without MMS support… unless something’s changed for carriers other than Sprint.

        • michael arazan

          Is it me or is AOL going to sue google when this comes out? It’s 1998 and AOL wants their emoticons back

    • Michael G

      I’ll definitely use it. I work in a 4G area however, my home is in the woods with no cell service. With WiFi connection I can send text messages to my family and friends and them to me. I have to use the G+ messenger when sending a pic though because Talk doesn’t allow it. It’s a real pain in the ass to use so many chat/text services and then having to get my friends/family to as well. I know I’m the minority with the situation but I can’t freakin’ wait for this.

  • Shane Redman

    well, the dictionary is already there in Jelly Bean and can be accessed if you’re rooted and flash the proper keyboard. They just don’t have color.

  • I’m so ready to Babel it up!!

  • possomcrast

    The emoji seem like classic emoji mixed with Google now’s “flat and simple” style.

  • livefromthe90syo

    gifs made a comeback…heres hoping for more sites with midi background songs

  • by the way… if you want to edit

    “is a look at the actually Android app.”

  • Serious question… Hatters or haters?

  • SecurityNick

    Did Google buy ICQ?

  • kids these days, amirite?

  • I’m hoping for this too, but either way, it looks nice

  • Damn Haberdashers.