Hangouts video calls get Google Drive file sharing support

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Today, you can share a file from Google Drive while taking part in a Hangouts video call. It seems like this feature should have existed for quite some time already, but only now is it available. You will never have to leave the conversation. Hangouts video calls will have a dedicated button within the chat window for file sharing. When the file is attached and shared, a preview appears in the chat window.

Here are the directions provided by Google:

  1. In the video call window’s left side, click the chat icon.
  2. Click the Drive picker icon, and choose the file you want to share with other people in the video call. Or you can paste the link to the file directly in the chat. Keep in mind that if they don’t have permissions to the file, you’ll need to ive the people access to the file.
  3. People in the video call can open the file from the video call’s chat in a new browser tab if they have permission to access it.

The update is rolling out over the next few days; therefore, do not be surprised if it has not appeared just yet. Have patience and, before you know it, the Google Drive file sharing button will be there.

Source: +Google for Work

Google Voice adds native MMS support for photo messages, Verizon officially on board

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Last week, Google Voice users noticed that MMS messages were working on Verizon Wireless. Today, it was officially announced, and Google Voice also got another very cool update for all users. Native MMS support for photo messaging has been added, meaning that users will no longer get a SMS with a link.

You need to obviously opt in to Google Voice in Hangouts. Once you have done that, just attach photos to any SMS message, and it will be delivered as a native MMS. Those of you waiting for group messaging, have no fear because Google said it will be enabled in a future update.

source: +Dylan Salisbury

You can now make international voice calls with Google Hangouts in India

google_hangoutsGoogle has just taken the wraps off of a cool new feature for Google Hangouts users in India. Starting today, it’s completely free to make phone calls to US and Canadian phone numbers from within Google Hangouts, and they’ve introduced some pretty low international rates if you need to call another country. Of course, Hangouts to Hangouts calls are still completely free, anyway.

Turning on voice calls in the Hangouts Dialer app will enable the feature automatically. The feature has also made its way to iOS and the web versions of Hangouts and Gmail, so whatever platform you use, you’re covered.

source: Google India

Messenger application will not replace Hangouts on Nexus 6

Nexus 6 press

On many of the press shots of the Nexus 6, there’s a new application in the phone’s dock next to the phone icon. The app is called Messenger, and at first glance, it makes sense to think it’s something that could replace Hangouts and finally merge everything into one single application. However, according to Google, that’s not the case. Not yet, at least.
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Google reportedly working on new messaging app

Google_Logo_7356When we first saw the mock up for the new Nexus, there was a messaging icon that was unexplainably there. With Hangouts being Google’s all-encompassing go-to messaging app, especially after the addition of Google Voice, it kind of seems like another messaging app would be a wasted effort but it appears that Google is working on one nonetheless. However before you go off thinking that this will be a whole new Hangouts it appears that this is will be tested in emerging markets and be similar to WhatsApp.


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Google Hangouts gets more changes than addition of Voice

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Yesterday the big news about Google’s Hangouts app was that Google Voice was finally being merged into the platform. As that update continues to rollout to users, Google has announced some other improvements to the Hangouts platform for communication. Perhaps the biggest change is that users accessing Hangouts using the iOS or Android app can now participate in video calls without a Google+ profile. The ability to do this first appeared in July when Google added this to the web-based Hangouts interface. 
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Hangouts On Air viewers can applaud during a live broadcast

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During a live broadcast of anything, clapping is an indication as to whether something is good or bad. Online, however, it can be tough to show good or bad reactions. Today, Google is introducing Applause to Hangouts On Air. It will allow viewers of a live broadcast to give thumbs up or a thumbs down to the creator. At the bottom, a chart will monitor how the live broadcast is making everyone feel. Green means things are going great and red is a sign that the live broadcast is a little iffy according to viewers.

Source: +Ming Zhang

Online statuses now appear in Hangouts on Gmail

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Something that’s annoyed a lot of users since Google Talk became Google Hangouts is the scattered contacts list. Google’s fixed that, by having friends who are online shown first, followed by those who aren’t. You can also pin your favorite contacts to the top so you can easily communicate with them. Still, you can message offline contacts of course, and they’ll get the message the next time they check Hangouts. 

Source: +Gmail