Google Hangouts just got a major boost in publicity from one of the biggest properties in the Google empire: YouTube. The video platform has just added a new sharing option below every video player on the site that allows viewers to start a Google Hangout session centered around that particular video This means that you and your friends–up to 10 of them–can watch and comment on it together in real time.
YouTube Google Hangout Button
Users need to click the “Share” button below the video player, and the new Google Hangouts button is on the right side of the options that come up. So now, along with Facebook and Twitter (and the +1 button), you also have Hangouts as a way to share a clip.
Now, this kind of thing–watching videos online live with your friends–isn’t entirely new. I remember playing around with a similar service a couple years ago with my coworkers. But it only had text-based chat. With Hangouts, you get video chat capabilities, while you’re watching a video–and you can have up to 10 people in there at once. That’s definitely not a service I’ve ever heard of before, and could be very big in the development of Hangouts and Google Plus in general.
Think about all the reaction videos you’ve seen in the past–videos of people watching online videos. Sometimes, the reaction of your friends is the very reason you share a video, and watching them is as much fun as watching the original video.
And is there a better way to be social with video than to watch and share it with friends in a large group… in real time? Why send an email to your friend about the hot new video when you can show it to him right now and get his reaction in real time (in video form)?
It’s pretty cool, and I’m looking forward to diving in and trying it out. But I’m interested in your opinion. Do you think you’ll use the new YouTube Google Hangout button? Do you think other viewers will?