A whole array of things is responsible for making smart phones as popular as they are now. And having a miniature computer in your pocket, able to do a lot of things your desktop or your laptop can is one of them. One of these things is talking to your friends in real time, for which there is a very wide variety of apps. In a surprising move for most of its users, Google Hangouts implements P2P connections.
Let’s go back in time for a while – about two years and a half should do. It’s 2015, and the few millions of Hangouts users received notifications about an upcoming update for their communications software. But despite initial appearances, things were not meant to end well, at least not for another couple of years.
Loyal users were pleasantly surprised to find that Google, the Hangouts developer, was asking them to use the software for file sharing, text messaging, and pretty much everything that the app supported instead of the pre-installed apps that came with the smart phones.
And they took that to heart, with the small but loyal following using it feverishly until about a month ago. That’s when the user base received a warning of sorts, telling users to stop using hangouts and switch to Google Messenger instead.
Most people took this as a sign that the company was about to give up on its old app, only to focus more on the severely underused Google Messenger. It turns out that that wasn’t quite right.
If you’re not familiar with the meaning of the term, but you think you’ve heard it or read it before, it’s probably in relation to pirating websites. But the term itself doesn’t have anything to do with pirating websites exclusively; it’s just something that they prefer using.
Peer to peer or P2P refers to the ability of some websites – or in this case apps – to bypass the parent servers and instead work using the connections of the users. This makes for far better connections and speeds, insuring stability, reliability, and even better security.
Hangouts will be using peer to peer connections only when possible, under no circumstances for all devices, routing audio and video calls for better quality and stability. Google wanted to emphasize that it will not become the default connection, but only an added bonus whenever available.
The service is already available for pretty much all platforms, with Google not wanting iOS or other platform users to be left behind because of a different choice regarding their smart phone.
Image source: Flickr