Google Conversation enables you to have informal or formal chat sessions with your friends and groups of friends. The former can be done between two people or among a group of people in what Google refers to as a group conversation. The latter is accomplished through a separate location known as a Space by Google.
Difference between Google Chat and Space
Chat, according to Google, is a mechanism for two or more people to communicate without any formalities. If you intended to rapidly discuss where you were going to meet for lunch, for example, you’d start a group conversation with your buddies.
A space, on the other end, is dedicated to more in discussions. Each space has its own identity, is free to leave and rejoin, sends out notifications, and allows users to share files. It’s perfect for business projects, party planning, or any other activity in which you want to keep the dialogue continuing for days, weeks, or even months.
If this sounds like something you’d be interested in, the first step is to learn how to activate Google Chat in Gmail. You must do it separately on your browser and on your mobile device for the time being.
How to Activate Google Chat on Mobile App
- In the top-left corner, tap the three-line icon. Select “Settings” from the drop-down menu.
- Choose a user account.
- Scroll down to the “General” section.
- Check the box next to “Show the chat and spaces tabs” if you’re using an Android phone. Toggle “Show the chat and spaces tab” on if you’re using an iPhone or iPad.
Instead of only Mail and Meet symbols at the bottom of the screen, you’ll now see Chat and Spaces icons.
How to Activate Google Chat on Browser
- Go to your Gmail account’s settings page (the gear icon in the upper-right corner)
- Choose “View all settings” from the drop-down menu.
- Select “Chat and Meet” from the top menu.
- “Google Chat,” “Classic Hangouts,” and “Off” are the options available. If you want to try Chat, go ahead and do so.
- Chat appears on the left side of your Gmail screen by default, but you may select to have it show on the right side.
- By the way, if you wish to conceal the Meet area in Gmail, “Chat and Meet” allows you to do so.
- Select “Save Changes” from the drop-down menu.
You’ll now have a Chat box, a Spaces box, and a Meet box instead of the Meet and Hangouts boxes that used to be on the left-hand side of your Gmail screen. Any contacts with whom you previously had Hangouts talks will display in the new Chat box; click on their names to see those past discussions in a small pop-up window in the lower left. (Note that if you previously blocked someone on Hangouts, the blocking will not be carried over to Chat.) Also, notice the option to the right of the search box, which allows you to select whether you want to be active, away, or undisturbed; you may also enter in your own status.
How to begin Google Chat on Web
- Click the + sign in the corners of the Chat or Spaces boxes to start a new Chat. A drop-down menu will appear.
- If you just want to communicate with one person, type their name into the top field, and a small pop-up chat box will appear. (If you like, you can make it bigger.) Select “Group conversation” if you wish to communicate with more than one person. You’ll then be able to create a list of persons with whom you’d like to chat.
- You can also establish a place (more on that later), browse existing spaces, or search for message requests from the same menu (in other words, search for previous requests for chats from other people).
How to begin Google Chat on Mobile app
- Tap the Chat icon in the lower-right corner, then the little “New chat” box.
- You can type a person’s name here (a list of your frequent contacts will appear below the links), create a space, or browse existing spaces.
- If you wish to start a group conversation (i.e., have a chat with several people), write in the first person’s name (or select their name from the drop-down list), then tap on the group icon that appears in the same box as you’re typing in, and add any further names.
People who have been invited to your chat will receive an email with a link and the opportunity to join or block the conversation; if they are using Hangouts or Chat, they will receive a notification.
Create a Space
- On the browser, click the + symbol next to the Chat box or the Space box on the left side of Gmail. Tap the Spaces symbol in the mobile app.
- Choose “Create space”.
- Make a space name and invite the people you want to be a part of it. (You may just type in their email address if they aren’t in your contact list.) Select “Create” from the drop-down menu. You’ll be shown around the new area.
- Those who have been invited will receive an email with a link. When they click the link, they’ll be sent to the new location and given the option to join or block it. (If they haven’t joined Chat yet, Hangouts will send them notifications.)
- Type into the field at the bottom of the screen to add a new message. You can add emoji, upload a file, add a file from Google Drive, start an audio or video meeting (which is essentially launching Google Meet), and plan an event using a set of icons on the right of the field (on the browser) or via the plus sign (on mobile).