Category: Communication

    Hangouts

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    • Vendor: Google Inc.
    • Version: Varies with device
    • Price: Free

    Microsoft has Skype. Apple has Facetime and iMessage. And for Google? It's Hangouts. A singular app for instant messages, text messages, group chat and voice or video calls. If you've never used it, it's actually a pretty compelling service. Seamlessly integrated in to Android and Chrome OS. There's an extension for using in the Chrome browser on desktops. You can use it on iOS. All you need is a device and a Google account.

    That's also one of the drawbacks, though, just like every other platform. It's a silo, confined to itself. Hangouts doesn't talk to Skype. Doesn't talk to Facetime. Both you and your friends have to have it. And if they're using BlackBerry or Windows Phone, they're simply out of luck.

    But if you use Hangouts, you know of its power. It's simple to chat with groups of people. Easy to see who's read your message and who hasn't.

    And if you want to broadcast a group chat for the world to see, it's time for Hangouts on Air. It's tied into YouTube. Just fire it up, chat away, and when you're done, it automatically uploads. (It's what we use for the Android Central Podcast, actually.

    Hangouts is still young, and it's still growing. We're waiting for it to integrate with Google Voice. And so we wait and see what Google has in mind Hangouts next.

    Hangouts - Featured Articles

    What you need to know about the new Google Hangouts, Hangouts Dialer, and the old Google Voice

    What you need to know about the new Google Hangouts, Hangouts Dialer, and the old Google Voice

    The new Hangouts is beautiful, and more than a little confusing now that it can integrate with Google Voice Google Hangouts is getting a pretty major refresh, and it now integrates with Google Voice. And there's a new Hangouts Dialer to contend with if you want to use both together. If it's all...
    Google Hangouts

    I'm going all-in with Hangouts for messaging and calls

    Google still has work to do, but you couldn't pay me to go back to the way things were before I'm just finishing a two week experiment where I've gone "all in" on Google Hangouts for my calling and texting. After dabbling around with things and watching bugs get fixed for a week after Hangouts...
    Google makes the first minute of select international Hangouts calls free through 2014

    Google makes the first minute of select international Hangouts calls free through 2014

    As an incentive to get people to try the Hangouts app to make phone calls, Google is offering the first minute of calls for free to 25 countries. While most calls to numbers in the U.S. and Canada are free through Hangouts, the first free minute of international calling to select countries will...
    Google Voice uninstall

    Why you shouldn't delete the Google Voice app just yet

    If you want to use your Google Voice number for every call, keep the app installed for now The times, they are a-changin'. Google Voice is slowly but surely being absorbed into Hangouts, and you can do basically everything you used to do in the Google Voice app inside Hangouts now instead. I say...

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    Hangouts - Photos

    Hangouts RSS Feed
    Google makes the first minute of select international Hangouts calls free through 2014

    Google makes the first minute of select international Hangouts calls free through 2014

    As an incentive to get people to try the Hangouts app to make phone calls, Google is offering the first minute of calls for free to 25 countries. While most calls to numbers in the U.S. and Canada are free through Hangouts, the first free minute of international calling to select countries will...
    Google Hangouts

    I'm going all-in with Hangouts for messaging and calls

    Google still has work to do, but you couldn't pay me to go back to the way things were before I'm just finishing a two week experiment where I've gone "all in" on Google Hangouts for my calling and texting. After dabbling around with things and watching bugs get fixed for a week after Hangouts...
    Google Voice uninstall

    Why you shouldn't delete the Google Voice app just yet

    If you want to use your Google Voice number for every call, keep the app installed for now The times, they are a-changin'. Google Voice is slowly but surely being absorbed into Hangouts, and you can do basically everything you used to do in the Google Voice app inside Hangouts now instead. I say...
    Video Hangouts on Android no longer require Google+ account

    Video Hangouts on Android no longer require Google+ account

    With this week's update to Hangouts users without Google+ accounts got a special treat. Any user can now join a multi-way video call on either iOS or Android. A major refresh for Google Hangouts is in the process of rolling out. Be sure to checkout our overview of the changes. What do you...
    Google Hangouts getting free voice calls and voicemail

    Google Hangouts getting free voice calls and voicemail

    It's been a long loooong time coming, but Google Voice is finally getting more-or-less fully integrated into Hangouts. Earlier today we saw Google migrating Voice messaging into Hangouts, and now with an update to the Hangouts app for both Android (version 2.3, which will be rolling out over the...
    New presence feature in Hangouts makes it clear to Gmail friends that you're not giving them the cold shoulder

    New presence feature in Hangouts makes it clear to Gmail friends that you're not giving them the cold shoulder

    Gmail is making it easier to create or join a Hangouts with friends by grouping those who are online currently together so you know who to initiate a conversation with if you need an instant response. The change, effective today, will now show a separate tab when you log into Gmail on the browser...
    Android

    Google's latest acquisitions push forward in mobile chat and video advertising

    Earlier this week Google confirmed two small acquisitions — Directr and Emu. Both of them should help push the company's mobile and advertising agenda forward. Let's start with Directr, a movie-making app that is being absorbed into YouTube. If you take a look at the company's website you'll see...
    Google wants Hangouts to be good enough for your company

    Google promises to make Hangouts a reliable tool for business

    Google Hangouts has had a significant batch of updates for enterprise users. Hangouts are now supported just the same as all of the other Google Apps for Business, which includes terms of service, certifications, and 99.9% guaranteed uptime. Third-party solutions providers now have a bunch of...
    Google Voice

    Google Voice can now handle website calls via Hangouts without Google+

    Google has just revealed that web surfers can make Google Voice calls via Hangouts without the need for a Google+ account, in the latest move towards an eventual merge of Google Voice and Hangouts. Alex Wiesen of Google announced the new feature his his own Google+ account, saying that this...
    google hangouts

    Google Hangouts video calls in Chrome won't require plugin anymore

    All Chrome web browser users will be able to access video chats in Google Hangouts without the need to download a plugin, although it will take a little while for this feature to be fully implemented. The announcement was made today by Google software engineer Victoria Kirst, who stated:...

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