Only a couple of days ago, we brought you news that Microsoft wants to compete with Slack with a new app called Teams. Another tech giant is also going the Slack way; Google is making some radical changes to Hangouts.
Google wants Hangouts to be a slack competitor, and is overhauling the app to make it work like Slack. The tech giant made the announcement on Thursday— “Hangouts will now offer two new services; Hangouts Meet and Hangouts Chat.
Scott Johnston, Hangouts’ director, product management said:
“Our customers have told us it should be effortless for them to connect over video and that chat should be more collaborative, so we’re evolving Hangouts to focus on two experiences that help bring teams together and keep work moving forward: Hangouts Meet and Hangouts Chat.”
Hangouts Meet, is one of two additions to Hangouts. The feature is a new video experience designed with one thing in mind; make it easy for people to join meetings without stress. According to Google, this feature is a product of feedback it got from users who asked for easier way to work with external clients or reducing the ‘time to start’ a meeting to zero. Hangouts Meet is designed to have a “light, fast interface, and smart participant management, Johnston said. “Simply start your meetings with a shared link — no accounts, plugins, downloads or hassles.”
Hangouts Meet is similar to the old Hangouts group video experience, but not without some radical overhaul. If you have a browser that supports webRTC, then there won’t be any need for plugins. However, a dial-in code is now required for anyone to join in on phone.
Hangouts Chat is the second addition and major overhaul made to Hangouts by Google. It is an intelligent communication app built for teams that takes direct messaging in Hangouts and “evolves it to reflect the way modern teams talk business.”
Just like Slack, Chats makes it easier to discuss tasks with friends and members of your team. Chat is integrated with G Suite, which means shared content from “Drive and Docs, or photos and videos can be viewed directly in conversations.” To find all your content dating back to when you started your project, Chat comes with a filterable search.
Hangouts Meet is already available to a global audience, and will be gradually made available to all G Suite customers in the coming weeks. Google said G Suite customers can however, apply to try out Chats through its Early Adopter Program.
Hangouts, formally Google Talk, is one of many Google apps not meeting up to people’s expectations. As a matter of fact, a lot of users have questioned Google for launching Allo at a time it did when Hangouts and other apps are still trying to find their feet. Hopefully, this gets Hangouts back on track and make it more appealing to people out there.
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