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Google to roll out HD video streaming in Google+ Hangouts

Google-HanoutsGoogle has finally announced that they will be rolling out HD video streaming in Google+ Hangouts very soon. Google+ Hangouts already allows users to host a video chat conference for upto 10 people (15 if you have a premium account) – now all that is available with HD experience.

The VP of Engineering at Google, Mr. Chee Chew, announced the news yesterday morning and said that the HD feature will first be rolling out to Hangouts On Air and then to regular Hangouts after a few weeks.

Chee also said that they will be switching from the currently running H.264 video codec to VP8 video codec as HD quality video streaming wasn’t possible on the former one. HD streaming with H.264 video codec would have required too much of power processing which further would have caused performance and stability issues.

Now Google would be switching to its open source VP8 video codec, thus allowing them to have the ability of running video stream in HD and also the ability to stream higher quality videos at lower bit rates. Therefore, even users with slow connections should see some alterations in their Google+ Hangouts video streaming experience.

However to get the full potential out of the VP8 video codec, one needs a HD webcam and an above average Internet connection.

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