Make free voice or video calls with Google Hangouts

Google Hangouts may have changed a bit, separating itself somewhat from Google’s social network, Google Plus, but the service still offers the ability to interact with others in a variety of ways, including voice and video.

Google Hangouts is a great way to collaborate or just chat with friends, especially when people are away from their computers. Google Hangouts offers the ability to have voice and video chats using a PC or mobile phone.

  1. Download Google Hangouts
  2. Google Hangouts on the web
  3. Google Hangouts mobile app
  4. Tips for video chatting on Google Hangouts

Download Google Hangouts

Google Hangouts is available on many platforms:

  • Using Google Hangouts on the web

  • Download the Google Hangouts Chrome extension

  • Download Google Hangouts for Android devices

  • Download Google Hangouts for iOS devices (such as iPhone, iPad, etc.)

Before you can start chatting with your friends via video chat and by phone, you need to learn how to start your video call with advanced features. Follow these simple steps to get started:

  • Sign in to your Google Plus account.

  • Scroll and locate the “hang out” feature as shown above on the right side of the screen.

  • Click ‘Start Hangout’ to continue.

Google Hangouts on the web

With Google Hangouts on the web, you can make voice or video chats or send messages. Go to the Google Hangouts website and sign in (you’ll need a Google account, such as a Gmail or Google+ account).

Start by choosing the type of communication you want to initiate by clicking Video Call, Phone Call, or Message in the menu on the far left or one of the designated icons in the center of the page. For a phone call or message, you are prompted to select a contact from your contact list. Use the search field to find a person by name, email, or phone number.

Clicking on a video call opens a window asking you to access your computer’s camera if you haven’t already allowed it. You can invite others to a video chat by entering their email address and inviting them.

You can also share the video chat link manually by clicking COPY SHARE LINK. The link will be copied to your clipboard.

Google Hangouts mobile app

The mobile version of Google Hangouts is similar in functionality to the website. After opening the application, you will see a list of contacts. Tap one of the options to send a message, start a video call, or start a voice call.

At the bottom of the screen are buttons to view your contact list and your favorites. You can also click the message icon to start a text message with a contact, or click the phone icon to start a phone call.

Clicking the phone icon will display your call history. Press the icon that resembles phone buttons to open the dialer and enter the phone number you want to call. When you’re ready to make a call, press the green phone button below the numeric keypad.

You can also click the contacts icon in the top right corner of the screen to search for Google contacts.

Tips for video chatting on Google Hangouts

While video chatting with a webcam in Hangouts is cool, some things may not be broadcast to your phone. Here are some tips to make your phone invitees feel welcome:

  • Ask each webcam user to listen through headphones/headphones to reduce echo.

  • Speak clearly into the microphone so that everyone can hear you.

  • If someone does something interesting in front of the camera, describe it to someone who can’t see their video window.

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