Google adds Hangouts to its business apps

The search giant is also partnering with Blue Jeans to let users on other teleconferencing systems to connect to Google Hangout calls.
By Ananth Baliga  |  July 30, 2014 at 4:29 PM
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MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif., July 30 (UPI) -- Google announced Wednesday they will include Hangouts to its suite of business apps, with users requiring a login for Google Apps and not a Google+ account.

The search giant will take the video chat feature from its social network, Google+, and provide it to enterprise clients, who can use it even if they don't have a Google+ account, a prerequisite for using the feature before Wednesday's announcement.

"Google Apps customers have been taking advantage of both Google+ and Hangouts for long enough that we recognize the separate use cases for both," a Google spokesperson told TechCrunch.

By moving the feature to Google Apps for Business, Hangouts will now come with 24-hour phone support and a guaranteed uptime of 99.9 percent, similar to Gmail and Google Drive.

The announcement also included a new partnership with Blue Jeans, a cloud-based video conferencing service, that will enable users using traditional phone lines or SIP-based video conferencing services, like Cisco or Polycom, to join a Google Hangout, increasing interconnectivity of the service.

Chromebox, Google's Chrome OS-based meeting device, will be updated to include two screens, one for Hangouts and the other for a presentation slide. Chromebox for meetings will be expanded to clients in the U.K. and Japan, as well as the United States, Canada, Australia and New Zealand.

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