Full review of Google Hangouts

Google’s new video conferencing system: Google Hangouts

After an experimental beta hangout released in 2011, Google decided that this group video conferencing system can be used by all Gmail, Google, and Orkut users.

Hangouts work very easily, once we enter our Google+ account, we are available over the air and we can invite those who wish to start the group video conference. The Google+ Hangout is a chat system, although with the possibility of interacting for free with up to nine people. This is precisely the great difference with other videoconferencing systems, the maximum number of people that can be connected simultaneously is ten.

The most commented hangout so far, not so much for its content but rather for the protagonist of it, was released in January of this year by Barack Obama, president of the United States of course as an advertising tool is very powerful, both in Networking and in Personal Branding. campaign, very effective system, especially through the publication and eventual viral effect. Hangouts to offer products or use them for commercial purposes can be extremely profitable, which is a tool that Community Manager should value accordingly.

Initially Hangout implemented in Gmail as an email account for extension services and of course to be associated by default with our Google+ account. Therefore, Hangout enabled both in our Gmail account and from the Google+ or orkut account.

The system has a couple of Hangouts curiosities, in addition to using some additional tools and effects, the highlight is that when users complete their group or video Hangouts, Google will publish it through their YouTube channel and on the profile of Google+ of the person who issued or organized.

Of course there are privacy settings, which should certainly be learned to use, otherwise the hangouts will be public and I insist, not only through the Google+ profile but also YouTube. From the Options panel you can configure them and insist, you must do it.

Those under the age of 18 must agree to participate in a hangout with people who do not belong to their Google+ circles. Even anyone who starts or hosts a group video conference can block their participation by “restricting minors’ access to this hangout.” If a child who participates in one and eventually enters an outsider into their circles, the system will pause and advise them to follow or not participate in the hangout.

Technical characteristics of Google Hangouts:

The minimum technical requirements to use the hangout video conferencing system are the following, according to Google I clarify this because in practice it is another story:

Supported Internet browsers: Chrome 10, Firefox 3 and higher and Internet Explorer 8 and 9. However, in any of the browsers listed above, the appropriate add-on must be installed, which to activate the hangout from our account we will automatically notify for its download and installation.

Supported operating systems: Windows XP onwards, that is, in the following versions it also works, and Mac systems X 10.5 and later.

Hardware requirements: I recommend using a minimum 2Ghz dual-core processor or higher, although tested on less powerful computers it also works if certain parameters are set, this last clarification is mine and is not officially endorsed by Google. Also, the system is available for use in mobile phones and they certainly don’t have such powerful processors.

Minimum bandwidth for hangouts: 1: 1 connections, it is recommended to use a minimum of 900 kbps (up / down) and for group video conferences 900kbps / 1800kbps (up / down). There is nothing mystical about it, anyone who uses systems like Skype or ooVoo knows perfectly well that the quality of the connection depends largely on the bandwidth of the users. Standing before a group video conference, precisely because that is the essence and thanks to hangouts, it is necessary to have a bandwidth large enough to maintain a fluid connection between all participants.

In addition to the maximum limit of ten participants per hangout, the system performs a check-in every 90 minutes to see if the user is still activated, is still there. Let’s remember that we can activate the system and then start inviting others to join, which can happen that participants delay in joining the hangout or simply give in or not.

The system can be used without video Hangouts, the screen will go black and only the sound resource will be used to maintain communication with other people. Something certainly convenient, especially if any of the participants does not have a good bandwidth in their internet connection.

The great failure of Google:

The point is that when mistakes have been made when implementing certain technologies or systems, instead of marketing mistakes have been made in basic psychology. Claiming that more than 100 million people who are used to interacting in the virtual world under a model, changing their behavior overnight is almost a fantasy. That marketing has nothing to do with it, it is pure psychology, hard and very simple indeed.

The millions of Facebook users are used to a functional model, a way of sharing and participating, a clearly defined and quite limited style. Facebook, as a social network, lacks basic functionalities, which can be found almost by default in other social networks; however, it is the queen of social networks, at least in terms of the number of active users.

Orkut was a strategic mistake by Google in the making, if they had invested resources in trying to impose social networks in the United States today, I would dare to say, they would be the owners of social networks. Orkut still has millions of users, mainly from Brazil and India, now increasing the platform’s active users or compared to Facebook. In just a few weeks, almost surreal, otherwise Orkut users can automatically link their accounts with Google+. This seems to confirm the rule, it is as if we are late to implement and exploit its resources.

Google Checkout in 2007 claimed to be the rival of PayPal, a well-known and highly efficient Internet payment platform. The matter was resolved in the old fashion and force; eBay, which in those years was Google’s main and most powerful advertiser, withdrew advertising from its main search engine. Case resolved, Google, given the commercial pressure to which it was subjected, decided to leave the project without more cost.

Google’s list of commercial failures is almost inexplicable, because Picasa is not a bad service, although quite limited compared to others; Google Sites is what it works for and little else. Blogger has enormous potential and no clutch has too great limitations yet, I say this from experience and I suffer from limitations almost daily. Google’s bookmarking service is just sorry, and I don’t mean to compare it to delicious, for example, because it would be unfair of me. The knowledge confirms the above, as Wikipedia literally crushed itself before exiting the project’s beta stage, leaving it buried in Google’s trunk of bad memories.

With Google Talk I also tried it, and in fact with little or no success. The system implemented for voice calls through Google’s Gmail was a big failure, not because the system itself was bad from a functional point of view, simply because users spent using it. Now with the hangouts it seems that they have succeeded and in my personal opinion I think that they have more than succeeded.

But we have to wait, especially because it is associated with the Google+ hangout, a social network that has not yet had such a significant impact as previously suspected and on the other hand, the rivalry between Facebook and Google does not help much in this regard. , otherwise. In my opinion, if hangouts were implemented via Facebook, of course they would be a success.

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