Google Brings Audio and Video Calls to Gmail App
In the recent update, Google adds video and audio calls to its Gmail app. After long attempts to create a successful messenger (most of which ultimately failed), it seems like Alphabet makes its bet on the project that is already successful. Now Gmail is for more than mail and meetings: it enhances its chat functionality with calls.
To activate calls, do the following:
- Run your Gmail app;
- Tap the sandwich menu in the upper left corner;
- Scroll to Settings;
- Tap your account;
- Activate the “Chat” option;
- Watch the app change its appearance.
As you do it, chats and calls will be available under a separate tab. Choose the chat there or create a new one by choosing the contact to chat with. At the top of the chat, near the contact’s name, there will be familiar buttons for audio and video calls.
So far, this feature is only meant for private calls. If you need to start a group chat on Google, you will have to turn to the already familiar Meeting feature and start the meeting there or use a standalone app like Google Meet. It’s not clear yet whether Google will introduce group calls in Gmail any time soon. But it has already merged Gmail and Google Chat apps: as you accept an incoming call in Google Chat, you’ll be automatically redirected to Gmail where the call will technically take place.
Though Google announced this feature on December 6, it will take some time before it reaches all the app users. Some of them will have to update the app manually if it doesn’t automatically. Still, it doesn’t grant that calls will become available immediately after the update. The new feature will be available on both iOS and Android for free.
Have you had any experience with Google meetings, chats, or video and audio calls? Do you think it will provide a better experience when transferred to Gmail and merged with its other services? Let’s speak of various teamwork platforms in the comments!