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Google added a small but potentially significant update to its Google+ Hangouts: a remote desktop feature. Similar to Skype’s desktop-sharing feature, Google+ remote desktop lets you remotely control and view another person’s computer while chatting away, assuming you get that person’s permission, of course. The Hangouts Remote Desktop is tucked away under the Add Apps section on a Hangout, so,next time you launch a Hangout session, go to View More Apps – Add Apps – Hangouts Remote Desktop to enable this feature.

Potential uses are many — remote tech support comes to mind first. Hangouts Remote Desktop could be a good alternative to other remote access tools like TeamViewer, LogMeIn, GoToMyPC, and WebEX PCNow. The Google+ app has the advantage of being free, and between friends and family, you don’t have to worry too much about security, either. As both parties are in the Hangout, you can chat and see each other during the session. You can also use remote desktop whenever you need to show or view your partner’s desktop, for any reason.

Google says that the feature is powered by the same technology behind Chrome Remote Desktop. You might have to bring everyone up to speed with Google+ and how to start a Hangout in order to use it, but it could  help to simplify the SOS tech calls and save you the cost of a trip or a hair-tearing phone session. It also makes Google+ Hangouts an even more worthy alternative to Skype.

Will this new feature switch you over to Hangouts?

Source: Google via The Verge


  1. BJ
    August 4, 2013 at 4:03 pm

    Can you help me with how to get Remote Desktop work on Hangout. I can only get the chat portion to work and can't even find the icon for remote desk. Must be something so simple that no one is addressing it when I try to find solution.
    THANKS so much

  2. GodSponge
    May 14, 2013 at 3:27 pm

    Might be something to try later. Right now I'm fine with TeamViewer since it's free for personal use and does everything I need it for including file transfer.

  3. Lee
    May 6, 2013 at 3:15 pm

    Can you use this if the other person isn't using Chrome? Say you want to control your parents computer, but they're using IE. Would this work?

  4. Nevzat A
    May 6, 2013 at 7:41 am

    This is great news!

  5. RubisSong
    May 6, 2013 at 6:39 am

    Still trying to figure out how it works. Maybe it's my network... but it seems very good! Bravo Google!

  6. suzanne williams
    May 6, 2013 at 5:06 am

    Just used this new feature after going through your article .. Simply great but the system got stuck in between.Will try again later.
    Thank you.

  7. Max
    May 5, 2013 at 10:21 pm

    Just used it today! Coincidence it came out just when I needed it!

    It stopped working on the second try, though. Hopefully theyll fix this.

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