Hangouts is fast becoming the video chat platform of choice, but they may have company in the iOS landscape. Those with access to both OS X Yosemite and iOS 8 are reporting FaceTime is getting some tweaks, allowing it to act a bit more like Hangouts. Group video chats are said to be inbound, as is a screen sharing feature.
Using iMessage in OS X and FaceTime in iOS, it looks as though we’ll get the ability to start a conversation with one person, then add more once a connection is established. FaceTime chats are currently a one-on-one scenario, at least with devices.
In addition to the group messaging, we will get the ability to share a screen in OS X Yosemite. That makes for a nice enterprise solution, even allowing those on mobile to chime in and view documents. As iOS becomes more of a productivity solution, we’d expect to see the screen sharing pop up there as well.
Best of all, the service remains free to use, even with the expanded utilities. From the sound of it, it’s much more like Hangouts than anything else, with one of the few glaring differences being the need to add people after starting a solo conversation. The system seems to be down for OS X Yosemite right now, but we should remember this is all beta stuff at this point; once it hits the masses, we’re sure to get the full suite from Apple.