How to Use the Hangouts App on Google Glass

Because Glass comes from Google, several Google technologies work with it right out of the box. One of these technologies is Hangouts, Google’s videoconferencing app. Glass lets you use Hangouts to send and receive chats and photos, as well as make video calls.

If you want to have a video call through Hangouts, your contact must also be logged in to Hangouts and connected with you as a friend.

You can initiate a video call with a contact on Google+ or a group of contacts in a Google+ circle. You can also receive a video call from another Google+ user (or even from another Glass user).

When you participate in a Google Hangout, you see the video of the other participants on your screen, and the other participants see your point of view — that is, what you’re seeing through the camera of your Glass.

Keep in mind four important facts about receiving and initiating video calls on Glass:

  • You can make video calls only if you’re running the Hangouts app on your Glass.

  • Video calls use up your battery a little faster than other activities do, so it’s best to keep your video conversations as brief as possible.

  • As more invitees join your Hangout, the faces on the screen become smaller to accommodate all the people you’re chatting with. Don’t worry, though; the number of faces you see won’t resemble a CNBC television discussion with multiple analysts, in which you can barely see all the faces on the screen. You’ll still be able to recognize everyone in the Hangout.

  • Consider etiquette and common sense when you’re in a video Hangout. Refrain from broadcasting events or content where such activity is prohibited, such as a movie playing in a theater.

Joining a Hangout

When you get a request to join a Google Hangout, you hear a chime on the Glass speaker and also see a picture of the person who’s inviting you to the Hangout.

If you want to join the call, tap the touchpad or say “OK Glass, accept call.” To decline the invitation, ignore it by swiping forward on the touchpad or say “OK Glass, reject call.”

Starting a Hangout

You can start a Hangout of your own from any screen. Just say “OK Glass, make a video call to…” followed by the name of the contact or the name of the Google+ circle containing the contacts you want to invite to the Hangout.

If the contact has logged in to the Google+ website on his or her computer or has the Hangout app for the iOS or Android mobile platforms, that contact can participate in the Hangout.

If the contact or circle you name isn’t in your Google Contacts database, a brief message appears onscreen, stating that the contact or circle doesn’t exist. In such a case, you have to add that contact first.

After you invite a contact to a Hangout, you see the Waiting screen, which tells you that you’re waiting for your invited contact to join your Hangout.

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You can continue to do other things while you wait for a contact to join your Hangout by swiping down on the touchpad to access your timeline.

When someone joins the Hangout, you hear the chime that sounds when you receive a request to connect; then you see the contact’s face on the Hangouts screen. When more of your invitees connect with you in the Hangout, you hear that chime and see those contacts’ faces onscreen.