One of the more popular features to come out of Google+ has been the Hangouts feature with the strongest level of adoption being people who want to host online shows or video podcasts on YouTube. As Google appears to be dismantling Google+ bit by bit, Hangouts is the next feature to be given its own home.
As of today, the service is no longer buried inside the Google+ or Gmail websites, you can now head over to hangouts.google.com to start using the Hangouts features. The site puts three of those features front and center – instant messaging, voice calls and video chats – each one of them has big buttons and are the focus of the main page.
In the past few months, Hangouts has been updated to the new Material design on both Android and iOS and fixes have been implemented to make the platform easier to use. As we mentioned, there has been a large number of users who have taken advantage of Hangouts and it is certainly the stand out feature from Google+.
Clearly Google recognises this and has been putting a lot of work into Hangouts. As well as the three buttons on the website, there is a set of tabs (with the same features) on the left along with a tray that has content from contacts to messages and so on. The background image changes automatically and is pulled in from photos which have been shared by users on Google+.
Google is starting to approach Hangouts in a way which may make it more appealing for even the most casual of ‘Googlers’ to use.