Tutorial: using Google+ hangouts on the iphone

This week I learned that,  though totally counterintuitive, you can’t start a Google+ Hangout with the Hangout function on the Iphone app.
We were working with clients this week to record some video.  I know not a ton of people use Google+, but it has some great functionality, including Hangouts, which is like video chatting, but better. At the appointed time, my coworker and I entered the Hangout.  All was well, we could see and hear each other, but our client was having some difficulty.  Though we tinkered a bit, we couldn’t resolve the problem.  After doing some research last night, I found that this is a known issue.  Since I wasn’t able to find a solution in my search (at least in the first page or so of search results), I played around a bit to figure it out.*
You’ll need:
  • Iphone with video
  • Google+ account
  • another Google+er, online, who will talk to you

To initiate a hangout from an Iphone:

  1. In Google+ app, go to main menu by tapping list icon in upper left.
  2. Enter the Messenger function.
  3. Start a new conversation by tapping chat icon in upper right corner.
  4. Tap people or type in name to start a conversation with that person. More than one can be selected.
  5. Type something in the text window at the bottom of the screen, hit send.
  6. At the next screen, tap the video icon in upper right.
  7. At next screen, tap Hangout.
  8. This will bring you to a highly deceptive screen saying it’s “Waiting for others to join.” The thumbnail/name of the invitee is listed at the top, with a small blue arrow.  Tap the arrow.
  9. New screen with thumbnail/name of the invitee listed, tap on this.
  10. Invitee’s profile page. Mid-screen, tap on hangout.
  11. This rings through to the invitee on computer.
Taking shortcuts in this process or starting the hangout from the Hangout option on the iphone app menu results in no video.  Also, I wasn’t able to get it to work to invite from my computer to phone.  I was working with a wifi connection, but was logged into 2 g-accounts, so that may have diverted the invite from phone to computer.
*I’m running OS6 on an iphone 4s. I’m not super technical, please don’t ask too many questions 😉
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