Yakyak: An extraordinary desktop client for Hangouts

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Google hangout

We live in the age of information and communication, there are too many ways to communicate instantly with people from other places, largely thanks to the Internet, some prefer Whatsapp, others Telegram, others Skype or iMessage, and others prefer Hangouts.

Hangouts is a messaging client created by Google. Mainly to replace Google Talk in the instant messaging sector using a new proprietary communication protocol instead of XMPP used by Google Talk.

Hangouts - Image from https://www.solucionex.com/
Hangouts

Google, we deserve a desktop client for Hangouts

As you read it, Hangouts, even though it was created by the Google giant, does not have an official desktop client, however in the “market” we can find “solutions” that would allow us to use it in our favorite distribution. Or even on our favorite operating system. And among those solutions, searching the internet, I find Yakyak.

YakYak: what Google should do for hangouts

When looking for a desktop client for a messaging application, the first thing we focus on is usability and functionality. And Yakyak does that perfectly and we must bear in mind that this is an unofficial desktop client, that is, its development has no relationship with Google.

Yakyak among other things, allows to do:

 

  • Send/receive chat messages
  • Create/change conversations (rename, add people)
  • Leave/delete conversation
  • Notifications (using native OS notifications)
  • Drag-drop, copy-paste or attach-button for image upload.
  • Show inline images
  • Offer alternative color schemes

And other things too. It is translated into many languages including the most widely spoken languages such as English, Spanish, Portuguese, Japanese, Korean and Italian; but they are open to include more languages, if volunteers join in.

Yakyak is built with Electron, a new framework for creating desktop applications using Javascript and HTML which guarantees that it is multiplatform and that its installation should not cause us problems. Today we will see how to install it in our OpenSuse 15 Leap.

Installing Yakyak

Fortunately, the development team provides us with pre-built packages so that we can install it even more easily in every GNU/LINUX distribution or on Windows or Mac OS. We have 32-bit and 64-bit packages, of type .deb or.rpm according to our distribution and type of operating system. The direct link to the download section is this.

1.- Downloading Yakyak
1.- Downloading Yakyak

If you use Debian, Ubuntu or any of their derivatives, you must download the.deb package, either 32-bit or 64-bit, according to the type of system you have. If you use Opensuse, CentOS, Fedora or any of their derivatives, the package to choose from should be the.rpm.

once downloaded the.rpm file in our case, we prepare to install it from the terminal with root privileges with the following command:

sudo zypper in file_path.rpm

In my case:

         sudo rpm -i Downloads/yakyak-1.5.1-linux-x86_64.rpm

 

Installing Yakyak
2.- Installing Yakyak

And that’s it!!

Using Yakyak

Once installed, we must run it in our OpenSuse Gnome.

3.- Running Yakyak
3.- Running Yakyak

When we execute him, after entering our username and password, we’ll see something like this:

4.- Yakyak
4.- Yakyak

A simple and clean view, where the panel on the left side are all our contacts and on the right side, the conversation itself.

By clicking on the 3-line icons next to the word conversations, we have the application menu. For example, in the image shown, we see the different alternatives for changing the color scheme.

6.- Settings
5.- Settings

In this other picture we see the options to change how conversations are displayed.

7.- More Settings
6.- More Settings

To conclude, we can say that, if Hangouts is a great messaging application, widely used around the world, it does not have a desktop client, but thanks to the open technologies and the enthusiasm of the community, we can enjoy this wonderful unofficial application that comes to answer this gap that Google has not filled. All that remains is to thank Davide Bertola, Martin Algesten and the entire team of contributors for this great program.

Please, feel free to spread this article through social networks, it is possible that someone can use it and with that you can also spread and help this great project.

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