Google would be very happy if you were using a chat app, it would be more than happy to push it beyond the real scope of the app. Last month, the tool became available to regular users. (That doesn’t pay for Google Workspace access), and now they’re compatible with Gmail too, but they won’t open by default, so if you want to use it, you have to dig in the settings menu.
First, open the side menu in Gmail, scroll all the way down and tap “Settings”;. On the next page, tap your personal Gmail account.
Scroll down to the “General” section of the list. The first option should be “Chat (trial first launch)”. Tap it. In the pop-up notification, tap “Try it out”.
Gmail will reboot, which can be a little confusing. Open it again if it doesn’t appear automatically and you will be greeted with a new bar at the bottom of the interface. “Mail” is your standard mailbox. “Chat” will take you to the app. The official Google Chat with all your text conversations, and “Room” is a view of the conversation running. (Same as Slack, but basically useless) You can switch between all three views at any time.
If you want to delete all chats and navigation bar below and you may want to follow the steps above again.