In an email test sent to volunteers, acquired by Android Police, Area 120 says: "You probably get a lot of chat messages". Like all other projects within Area 120, it's a very early experiment so there aren't many details to share right now. The experimental project not only provides simple Smart Replies, it also recommends a specific ETA when users are asked what time they'll arrive to their destination. There's a Do Not Disturb mode that switches on when you're driving to silence your phone and alert those who message you that you can't chat, as well as a Vacation Responder that checks your calendar on your behalf to tell people if you're not working. If you have never used them before, they are AI-powered responses to messages you receive from others. Here, it offers Smart Replies to your notification and gives responses to questions like "When can you be home?" or "Are you at the restaurant?"
The email outlined a few features of the Reply app.
Google's internal incubator, Area 120, is working hard to incorporate this functionality into chat apps such as Google Hangouts, WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, Android Messages (for all carriers), Skype, Twitter DMs, and Slack. The feature was then rolled out Gmail, Allo and Android Messages on Project Fi. But the feature has not been made available to all Android Messages users as of yet.
The replies take user's current location into consideration in order to craft a correct response. Pretty soon, WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, Skype, and other apps will offer smart automated replies.
There's also "Don't miss the important stuff" to ensure the user does get important messages even when the phone is on silent.
Announced in a blog post, the tech giant said the feature is now in a test period, meaning only a handful of news outlets like CNN, The Washington Post and Mashable, have the chance to embed publisher-made stories into search results. The new project is still in its early development and Google may not even make it widely available outside of its Area 120 testers. And you want to be there for people, but also for people in the real world.
It should be noted that Android Messages, as mentioned, has already received Smart Reply support.
The request for testing of the new project came from Area 120, a division of Google that works on experimental products.