Private messages in Hangouts, our intern experiment

+Mairin Chesney and I are interns at Google Kirkland on the Google+ Hangouts team. We’re about to head back to school, but before we do, we want you to see what we've been working on!

Back at school, we’re almost always paying full attention to the professor. No, really. We mean it! (Hi, Mom! :)). But once in a while... a private note gets passed. Not by us, mind you. We just noticed other folks doing it. We had the thought, “Hangouts need private messages!” So that’s what we did!

Now you don’t have to pass secret notes under the desk. If you’re in a Hangout with a group of people, but you want to make a comment to just one of them, simply type “/to [their name] [your message]”. You don’t need to type their full name, just enough so that it’s not ambiguous who you mean. Type “/users” to see the nicknames you can use for each person in the Hangout.  

We also made it easy for you to reply. Click the Reply link on a private message and go! 

We’ve had a wonderful summer here at Google, and we’re excited to bring retro commands to a new generation.  

It’s an experimental feature rolling out over the next couple hours, so be sure to comment and let us know what you think!

+Anthony Tordillos and +Mairin Chesney  


pssst... try "/help" for more. 
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