Google Chat Will Replace Hangouts Next Month; Twitch Bows Guaranteed Streamer Income; 3G Shutdown-More Than Just Phones; LinkedIn Unveils Own Podcast Network

The long delayed (since 2019) switch from Google Hangouts to Chat for Workspace will now see its final phase instituted by March 22nd. 9to5google.com reports that ‘Chat preferred’ setting will be turned on for those customers who haven’t already done so, making Google Chat the default application. Should you visit classic hangouts in Gmail on the web or on the mobile app, you will get a redirect to Chat. This upcoming classic Hangouts to Chat transition only impacts paid Workspace users and does not affect free personal Google Accounts. The company previously indicated that the migration would occur after all Workspace users are switched over.

Twitch is introducing a plan called the Ad Incentive Program, which will pay select streamers a guaranteed monthly minimum amount of ad revenue. According to theverge.com, they have started notifying those streamers of the new deal. The income is based on the amount of ads run per hour and total hours streamed. An example Twitch gave is for a creator who streamed at least 40 yours in a month. That streamer could pick up $100 for running two minutes of ads an hour, $300 for 3 minutes, and $500 for 4 minutes. Twitch is also including an ad management feature that controls when the ads roll during a stream, lifting the burden of timing ad breaks for the streamers. Streamers will still be able to take in revenue from donations and subscriptions. 

You have probably heard plenty already about the cellular carriers shutting down their 3G networks…and hopefully, don’t have such an old phone that it will be affected. If so…tough, ya cheapskate! You may also want to look at your connected car. Many makers have sent out info to upgrade your car system to 5G. Others offer (for a chunk of change) hardware to let you upgrade. You may also have an older smart watch which is not LTE or 5G, and that connectivity will be lost…although most of those also have WiFi and Bluetooth to connect to your phone. At any rate, here’s the shutdown schedule…AT&T already threw the switch, and started shutting down their 3G network on February 22nd. T-Mobile (and the old Sprint net) will be shut down on March 31st. Verizon is giving users the longest grace period. They will kill their 3G CDMA network on December 31st of this year. If you have another carrier, it will lose service based on the carrier they ride on. Cricket is on AT&T, so that’s being shut down now. Boost Mobile depends on T-Mobile, so March 31st is your date.

LinkedIn is unveiling its own podcast network, that will feature in-house shows from the company’s news team, and also programs from industry features. Techcrunch.com reports that the network will be geared toward a professional audience. LinkedIn says it will be focused on understanding tech, managing mental health and explaining the hiring process. Listeners can check out the podcasts on LinkedIn directly, and the shows will also be available on Apple’s Podcasts, Spotify, and other podcasts platforms. 



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