Google Hangouts for Chrome May Be Getting UI Rework, Education On Air Conference Starts Soon!
The latest news regarding Google Hangouts, Googles Messaging application, is that the former head of Google Hangouts, Nikhyl Singhal, has been hired to work at Credit Karma as their new Chief Product Officer. He started on April 20th. Singhal left Google in January, along with many other people working on Google’s social and communications products.
Google Hangouts is still not very popular around the world, despite being tightly integrated with all of Google’s products. Singhal says that he considered the evolution of Google Hangouts a success, and that he opted to pass the next level of the software to someone else. Meanwhile, there’s been some rumors that the Google Hangout’s app for Chrome may be getting a redesign. There’s been a few images floating around that suggest that Google is testing a new redesign for the app to improve user engagement.
The new image shows a familiar color scheme, but there is now two distinct panes, one for the current conversation and another for previous conversations. The “chat heads” look to be replaced by a more normal windowed interface. The redesign seems to share a lot in common with the current version of Google Hangouts for Android. We will likely find out more at Google I/O, which takes place at the end of this month. One of the interesting uses of Google Hangouts is that it can be used to host large video conferences with its Google Hangouts on Air feature.
The next big move for Google Hangouts is that it will be used to host an education conference called Education On Air. The entire conference is free and streams on Google Hangouts on May 8th and 9th. The event will have more than 100 sessions including keynotes from LeVar Burton and Michael Fullan. The event was announced in March, and people who registered early were able to vote on the conferences sessions’ themes. The main focus of the Education On Air conference will be innovating within the classroom.
Many teachers wanted to find more ways that they could use the existing technology they already have access to in their classroom easier. Most of the presentations will focus on implementing tools and techniques that are affordable and easy to learn how to use. Many other sessions will talk about how Google’s tools can be effectively used in the classroom.
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