+27
Completed

Integrate a Voice Communication Tool or Improve Google Hangouts Integration

Isaac de la Fuente 2 years ago in Misc • updated by bdayedgar 7 months ago 21

Quick calls with team members is a must-have feature and the Current Google Hangout integration is clunky. It also cannot support calls of more than 10 people (because it defaults to a video call). I think there are several options that could greatly improve this experience.


  1. Update the Google Hangout Button so it creates the Hangout and then posts this hangout url into the team chat or direct message. This will allow one person to create the call and the rest of the members will see that call in the Chat area and can click to join.
  2. Update the Google Hangout Link to Open in the Google Hangouts Desktop App if Present. We use Google Hangouts and have it open on our computer but the Ryver Link that is created opens a url in the browser. When clicked, we have the Hangouts App Open but we're forced to hang out in the browser. Very frustrating.
  3. OR - Create your own voice application in Ryver (like your competitor just released in Beta) that will allow teams to call each other directly!
  4. OR - Create a strong integration with another VOIP partner or Skype. For example linking skype usernames to Ryver users and one click access to call them or a group.

The reality is that it's tough to completely ditch our previous communication tools when we don't have a simple one-click method to talk with each other.

-1

I think this is an excellent idea, particularly point number 3: Create your own voice application in Ryver. Having various applications for different tasks is clunky and unnecessary, especially in this day & age and the advancement of technology.

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I will have to chime in here... I have a fair amount of knowledge on some of the technologies involved in voice/video calling, particularly in web/mobile environments and there is a good reason Slack acquired a company that had years of experience in the field and/or related technologies.


From a product background for over 15yrs I'd strongly advise against thinning out your efforts in this way... Maybe one day, but now I'd focus on integrations. I'll vote for "the best" hangouts integration around, and then something else, and so forth... Similar to what slack did (although I'd try and integrate in a nicer way, for example)...


Appear.in is a nice and quick one, but lacks many features needed by companies... I have used Zoom extensively and am now using hangouts more as we are migrating to a GApps ecosystem... Worse personal experience was with skype, but it varies... My vote is 1 & 2... steer clear of 3, and I wont comment on 4 since I havent used it in ages...


An "easy" integration layer (such as something other developers can contribute as plugins for example) will much help Ryver... If you consider that Slack has a large number of working integrations, adding an option for "compatible" webhooks, for example, could also be a good strategy... in the end, the user experience is what counts, not who "initially used" a certain format (in rgds to supporting the same formats as slack or hipchat or other programs)...


Zapier also opens lots of doors with a single integration effort, but thats more general (although it could perhaps be used with some voice/video apps...)

I did some poking around and found that Skye actually released a feature last year, allowing you to create conversations with a static url (like Google Hangouts). It would be great if you could integrate this with a button just like you did Google Hangouts. This would at least give us a one-click option to talk to more than 10 people at a time.


It would be awesome if you could pin a different static skype url to Team Chat window in Ryver as well as each Direct Message Chat window. You could then setup url specific skype conversations pre-populated with the correct people for that conversation. One click to open and one click to call.


http://blogs.skype.com/2015/10/15/a-new-easier-way-to-start-a-skype-conversation-and-invite-anyone-to-join/

Started

Thanks for the great, detailed feedback Roy and Isaac! We have started looking into some WebRTC-based solutions, and will probably be rolling out a simple /gtm command within the next week for kicking off a quick GoToMeeting Free online meeting. It will be limited to 3 people, so it is intended more for 1:1 situations. But it is much quicker/smoother than our Hangouts integration and provides a link right there in the chat room.


We're also looking at a couple of other solutions, and might end up with one default, plus a couple of other options depending on user preference. We haven't started on Skype yet, but will be looking into that at some point.

Thanks for the update. Please let me know if you need help with testing or feedback!

Please check out the /gtm chat command that we added yesterday and see what you think. It's best for 1:1 chat because there is a three person max, but you can still do it in a team/forum. If you log into GoToMeeting Free (you can log in with your Google account), you can add your actual name/avatar rather than use the generated ones, and it should remember you.

The gtm command is great. I've never been a go to meeting user, but it worked beautifully. My complaint would be there isn't a /hangout to start a hangout the same way, which is inconsistent.


We're currently evaluating video conferencing tools, since we have a lot of remote workers. Having a frictionless solution to start an audio or video chat from within Ryver is quickly becoming a necessity. The Hangouts works, although clunky. Putting a link for Join this Hangout in chat, the way you did for gtm, would be a big step - we're Google Apps so we can have 25 people in a hangout.


I agree with those above that trying to build your own audio/video solution would likely not be the best use of your time. If you could continue to find ways to integrate popular services so they could be accessed easily, that would allow us your users the freedom to chose what we want to communicate with.

That's a good point on /hangout. We have a technical issue at the moment with Google Hangouts that is preventing our getting the link back to the hangout. Hoping we can get that resolved soon, but we are also looking at another alternative that would provide a /gtm like experience, but without the 3 user limitation.

If you could get the link back and store it that would be amazing for my team. A 3 person limitation is obviously constricting for many teams. Thanks!

We've been making use of Discord for all voice chat recently. Its server based which has it's own cost issues, but can handle, in theory, rooms with quite a large number of users. What we love about the functionality is that you dont need to "dial", instead you setup voice chat rooms and can just click on one to join. It's a fantastic tool really buiilt for Streamers and gamers, but having something similar to this in Ryver would truly make it a Slack killer. We've spoken to a number of game studios who are doing something similar - either running Slack of Ryver for text chat and then Discord for their voice chat.

I have a paid GTM account which has a personal link associated with the account - https://www.gotomeet.me/XXX (where XXX is the unique identifier for my GTM account). The /gtm integration launches me directly into the free version. Is there any way that I can use my paid GTM account for Ryver versus the free version? It would seem that you should be able to just have a customized url for the /gtm shortcut?

looks like since the UI overhaul there is no google hangouts button nor does the /gtm slash command work

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We have brought back the Google Hangout button. Though, as of Aug 8, there appears to be an issue on the Google side for displaying the button, as there are a bunch of developers reporting the issue. We'll continue looking into that.


Now that GTM Free is no longer available, we will be looking into allowing you to map your GTM account to Ryver. Users have also requested the same for Zoom and Skype. We're evaluating what it would take to provide all of these as options, even though we don't work with these companies directly.


We have also just started the process of integrating with another vendor to provide an integrated voice, video, screenshare option. It will allow us to offer for free up to 10 voice/screenshare users, and 3 video. We're excited to have this project under way and look forward to rolling it out as soon as we can.

+2

I really appreciate all that you guys are doing with this application and I have been extremely happy with Ryver. The one (pretty big) gap that has been recognized by many of Ryver's users is the integration with audio/screen sharing apps such as GoToMeeting, Google Hangouts, etc. Chat can only take you so far and the ability to launch into an audio conference is critical when working in teams.


I know that you guys are working hard to bring these capabilities to Ryver and I can't wait to see what you come up with; I only hope that you can bring it to us soon, very soon, very very soon (hint, hint). ;-)

-1

If you are looking to add a communications solution. I would highly recommend you integrate with Switch Communications (Now once again called DialPad).


I am sure your two products would work wonders with many Ryver clients.

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Completed

We rolled out an integration with FreeConference.com today. It allows up to 10 people in audio with screenshare, and up to 3 people on video.


We will be continuing to make improvements to the integration, but I'm marking this particular entry as "completed". I'm sure additional Ideas will surface related to conference calls.

Where can I read up on how to use this integration?

I want talk my friends to face to face.