Google has been trying to divert traffic towards its Hangout platform ever since it became a standalone service for the web. In line with the same, the company has now announced that Hangouts, as part of an improvement upgrade, will use peer-to-peer connection when possible.
The ability to send SMS is also being discontinued by Google in order to make Hangouts standout among its competitors. The p2p feature has already being integrated into Hangouts and a few users have noticed the change on their application.
Google believes that by introducing this feature the call quality will be vastly improved. Google, however, as stated earlier, will only be using p2p when possible, which indicates that the improvement in performance will be limited to certain occasions. The new feature has been incorporated on Hangouts for Android, iOS and the web.
With Peer-to Peer connection, whenever a user makes a call, it will be connected to the person at the receiving end directly, instead of connecting to Google servers first. Do note though, that with the p2p connection used for making calls, the users IP address has to be revealed. With both the users IP addresses, Hangouts can determine the location before making the call.
Similar issue existed on Skype, which also made connection through p2p. But Skype, has now rolled out a new feature last month that hides IP addresses of the user. This makes it really hard for anyone to get to know a user’s location through their IP address.
Google is also in the process of developing a chat service powered by artificial intelligence. With new and similar services being introduced from the company, Hangouts might still get some additional features in the future to make it stand out from the rest.
Currently, Google’s Web Real Time Communication (WebRTC) could been used by the company to make voice and video calls. WebRTC is an API, through which users can make voice as well as video calls without using any plugins. The technology was first introduced by the company about five years ago in 2011. The API has now made its way into Chrome as well. The benefit of using WebRTC is that the users data and identify is hidden using encryptions. So the chat history as well as the location of both the users is safe from any malicious hacking.