Google Meet reintroduces HangOuts feature

Google Meet is Google’s Zoom-like video conferencing service. Meet’s predecessor used to allow broadcasting calls to YouTube, and Google is now bringing it back. Yes, Meet has reintroduced Google Hangouts.

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Meet includes capabilities not seen in Hangouts, including as real-time captioning and capability for up to 250 participants and 100,000 live stream watchers. Hangouts only enables video calls with a maximum of 25 people. Google users may start a meeting by going to meet.google.com, or meetings can be scheduled ahead of time using Google Chat or Google Calendar.

Google said this week that it would begin offering the option to live stream a meeting to YouTube without the usage of any other program that are typically necessary for streaming (like OBS). The functionality will be accessible from the Activities panel, under a new Live Streaming option.

The live streaming capability is comparable (if not identical) to Hangouts on Air, which used to allow users to directly stream Hangouts calls to YouTube. Hangouts on the Air was lost in the shuffle once Hangouts became Hangouts Meet, and eventually Google Meet. Google decommissioned it in 2019.

According to Google, the capability is available to all presently supported Google Workspace accounts and personal Google (Gmail) accounts, but it may take a few days to reach everyone. Live streaming will not be available to those with older G Suite or Workspace ‘Essentials’ accounts.

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