Google Plus Tips – Hangout with Extras

Posted by Mayank on September 20, 2011 in Google,Google+

Google Plus in the Invite-Only mode had this wonderful feature of Hangouts where you could chill out with friends that are scrolling through the web, just like you. You could use live video chat, which placed you and your friends in the same room together. Today, Google Plus was opened to public and it came with an added feature called Hangout with Extras. Hangouts with Extras has additional features that enables easy collaboration in real time.

Hangout with Extras allows you to do screen sharing, Google Docs integration, Notes and Sketchpad and Named Hangouts. All these features are not present in Hangouts. There is only one feature missing in Hangout with Extras, which is there in Hangouts and it is watching YouTube clips together. The below chart shows the differences :

differences between hangouts and hangouts with extras

How to Start a Named Hangout

Named Hangout is a feature of Hangout with Extras. You can start a named hangout from the stream whenever you want.

  1. Logon to your Google Plus Account.
  2. Click the Start a Hangout button on the side of your stream (Or go to
  3. Click Try Hangouts with Extras.
  4. You’ll be taken to a so called “green room” where you can get your camera set up done and choose additional circles or individuals to add. Don’t be conscious about being in the green room as no one can see you yet.
  5. Choose a name for your hangout. Try a unique hangout name else you can land up in an existing hangout with the same name instead of starting a new one 🙂
  6. To invite people (read more people) to your named hangout, all you have to do is add the circles or people you want to add.
  7. Click the Start Hang Out and you’re ready to chill out or give a lecture. Just make sure you have an audience 🙂

hangout with extrastry hangout with extras













You can also invite additional people to a hangout after it’s already begun. Click Invite at the top right of the hangout window, add the circles or people you want to share with, and click Invite now.

Visibility of your Named Hangout Invites

There are a few different ways people can discover that you’re hanging out:

  1. If you invite people to join a hangout, a post will appear in their stream telling them that there’s a hangout going on, along with all the people in that hangout currently.
  2. If you invite less than 25 people, individuals that are signed in to chat will receive an IM with a link to join.
  3. If someone invited to a hangout tries to start their own, they’ll be told that there’s a hangout already going on and they may want to join that one instead.

People may unintentionally join your hangout if they choose a hangout name that is the same as yours. Hence, the need to have a uniquely named hangout or you can also leave the name that’s automatically generated.

Join a Named Hangout

Joining a named hangout is simple and there are a few ways you can do it:

  • Your stream will contain messages for the hangouts that you’ve been invited to. Click the Join this Hangout button to join whichever you wish.
  • Anyone who is already in the hangout can also send you the URL to a hangout, which you can use to join.
  • If you know the meeting name, you can type the URL for the meeting into your browser. The URL for the meeting will be ““. For example if your meeting name is apple123, you would use the following URL, “”

Add an Existing Doc to the Hangout

To update an existing Google Document, click the Add document button next to Documents at the top left of the screen.

Sharing Settings

  • If you upload a Google Doc that hasn’t been shared with everyone in the hangout, you’ll be prompted to share it with the other participants so that they can see and edit it.
  • When someone new joins the meeting, someone in the meeting with sharing permissions, will have to share the Doc with them also.

Once a hangout has ended, you can still access notes by going to your Google Docs Documents list. The notes will be titled, Notes: “meeting name”.

Share your Screen

Google+ Hangouts with Extras can be used for sharing your screen. You can share the entire screen or just one window. Right now it is not possible to remote control someone else’ screen — you can only see what the other person is doing. This is especially great for a little hands-off tech support with friends and family.

To share:

  1. Click Share Screen at the top of your screen.
  2. In the window that pops up, choose your desktop or choose the window you want to present.
  3. Click Share Selected Window.

You can stop sharing your screen at any time by clicking Stop Sharing Screen.

When you’re done hanging out you can convert the Doc to another format (i.e. Word Document). To do so,

  1. Click File at the top of the document.
  2. Select Download as.
  3. Choose the file type.


Don’t forget to visit Prashant on Google+ and add  +Apurva Tripathi to your circles on Google+ for similar tips and other amazing stuff.

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{ 1 comment }

1 Luis Olierio September 23, 2011 at 1:06 pm

This rocks!

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