Microsoft today updated mobile group messaging app GroupMe for Android, iOS, and Windows Phone with calendar functionality. You can download the new version now directly from Google Play, Apple’s App Store, and the Windows Phone Store.
With the calendar addition, GroupMe can be used by both organizers and attendees to schedule and keep track of events with all their groups. You can send an invite to your group, set up automatic reminders, keep track of who is going, and view all of your group’s events in a single place.
GroupMe says users have been asking for the calendar feature “for a long while.” The process is straightforward: “Just name it. Describe it. Add a location. Maybe even a photo. A couple of alerts later and hooray! It’s a party.”
Microsoft also adds that its users already use GroupMe to talk about upcoming events. As such, Calendar event invites remove the back and forth messages “while providing an easy way to keep the group organized and everyone in-the-know.”
Aside from the calendar feature, GroupMe has gained a Material Design look on Android and now supports @ mentions in the iOS app. Better late than never?
Microsoft came to own GroupMe, which launched in May 2010, in a rather roundabout way. Microsoft announced plans to acquire Skype in May 2011, and just a few months later, in August 2011, Skype acquired GroupMe, which was then just a one-year old startup. Microsoft’s acquisition of Skype closed in October 2011.
It’s clear Microsoft hasn’t quite decided what it should do with GroupMe. Despite the fact that the mobile messaging market is already highly saturated with competitors, the app still has a loyal user base. On the other hand, it is no match for other popular messaging apps. As a result, GroupMe continues to get sporadic, long-overdue updates while its future remains uncertain.