Google upgrades Gmail video chat with Hangouts

It will now be possible for users to engage in Gmail video chats with multiple people

Google will begin replacing on Monday Gmail's existing video chat system with a new, better one based on the Hangouts feature from its Google+ social networking service, the company said on Monday.

The swap will improve the quality and performance of Gmail video chats, and, if users have Google+ accounts, they will be able to communicate with multiple people -- up to nine participants as long as all have Google+ accounts. So far, Gmail's video chat feature has allowed only for one-to-one sessions.

Other new features for Gmail users who also have Google+ accounts will be the ability to watch YouTube videos simultaneously, collaborate on Google documents and do screen sharing.

In addition, the change also expands the scope of people Gmail users can video chat with beyond their Gmail contacts to now include people in their Google+ circles.

Another improvement is that Gmail video chat sessions will no longer be limited to computer browsers but rather be possible as well on Android and iPhone tablets and smartphones.

Google will roll out the new Hangouts video chat in Gmail gradually over the coming weeks, starting with personal Google Accounts and then moving to Google Apps, the cloud-based collaboration and e-mail suite for organizations that includes Gmail.

Juan Carlos Perez covers enterprise communication/collaboration suites, operating systems, browsers and general technology breaking news for The IDG News Service. Follow Juan on Twitter at @JuanCPerezIDG.

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Juan Carlos Perez

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Cool Tech

Toys for Boys

Family Friendly

Stocking Stuffer

SmartLens - Clip on Phone Camera Lens Set of 3

Learn more >

Christmas Gift Guide

Click for more ›

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Aysha Strobbe

Microsoft Office 365/HP Spectre x360

Microsoft Office continues to make a student’s life that little bit easier by offering reliable, easy to use, time-saving functionality, while continuing to develop new features that further enhance what is already a formidable collection of applications

Michael Hargreaves

Microsoft Office 365/Dell XPS 15 2-in-1

I’d recommend a Dell XPS 15 2-in-1 and the new Windows 10 to anyone who needs to get serious work done (before you kick back on your couch with your favourite Netflix show.)

Maryellen Rose George

Brother PT-P750W

It’s useful for office tasks as well as pragmatic labelling of equipment and storage – just don’t get too excited and label everything in sight!

Cathy Giles

Brother MFC-L8900CDW

The Brother MFC-L8900CDW is an absolute stand out. I struggle to fault it.

Luke Hill

MSI GT75 TITAN

I need power and lots of it. As a Front End Web developer anything less just won’t cut it which is why the MSI GT75 is an outstanding laptop for me. It’s a sleek and futuristic looking, high quality, beast that has a touch of sci-fi flare about it.

Emily Tyson

MSI GE63 Raider

If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?