Google+ Hangouts with integrated SMS will ship with Nexus 5, come to Google Play in weeks

The second version of Google+ Hangouts for Android will land on the Nexus 5 initially, and will follow on Google Play in the coming weeks, Google announced on Thursday. The changes to Hangouts, the biggest yet in less than a year of availability, were announced earlier this week.

Most noticeably users can now send and receive text messages within the app, replacing the old-school SMS solution you've come to know on Android. Google's now going for a streamlined approach, centralising communication on Android. Additionally, animated GIFs, the ability to quickly share location, and current mood status have all been added to Hangouts.

General improvements have been made too: it’s quicker to start new conversations, you can now attach photos from other sources like Google Drive, and we added some butter to make the app faster and smoother, Google says.

If you've just purchased a Nexus 5, you'll be happy to know it will come pre-loaded with the Hangouts changes. Have another Android device? You'll be waiting a few weeks. Read more about changes from earlier this week.