Google+ Hangouts Get Cool Upgrades Including Mobile, Live-To-Air and Dial-In

“Hangouts” is the first smart response you’ll get when you ask someone why you should even be using Google+ at all.  It’s a cool feature that allows you to have a live video chat with a friend while simultaneously watching YouTube videos together.  Today, Vic Gundotra, the Saul Tigh of Google’s social initiatives, has posted that they’ve done a few upgrades to the service.

First of all, you can now start a Hangout by clicking the “hangout” button underneath a post, and it starts a conversation related to that topic on the fly.  So if you see a comment “I just got a new Ford Focus,” you can immediately start a Hangout right there in the comments, and ideally anybody else who wants to chat about this fascinating turn of events will join you to discuss the merits of Automobilia Americana.
Google has also launched Google Hangouts on your Google+ Messenger, which allows you to have a video chat with someone with just a click from your mobile phone.  I’m looking forward to that, although my Samsung Galaxy doesn’t have a front facing camera, unfortunately!

Finally, they’re introducing “Hangouts on Air”, which allow people to broadcast their own special videos.  Pretty cool feature, which really hasn’t caught on yet, but may in the future, especially now that you can broadcast to many people.  I imagine this being useful if a whole family had Google+ equipped televisions.  Imagine 3 or 4 families connecting to watch the talented youngest grandchild do a Fred Astaire tap dance.

Check out more of the cool new features here.