How to enable Google Chat on your phone and computer

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Alphabet has turned Google Chat into a communication platform that complements its Workplace tools, Google’s productivity suite, as a form of collaborative communication.

Workplace is Google’s suite that brings together all of its productivity tools, now adding Chats and Spaces

As a way to compete with Slack now both Chats and Spaces can be used from within the Workplace app itselfintegrating these forms of communication with Gmail email.

Spaces, formerly called Rooms, as well as Chats, allow communication between groups and work teams, the latter being more used between two interlocutors to quickly initiate even more informal conversations, while the former facilitate communication between large groups and are, therefore, more used in professional and academic environments.

Another difference between Chats and Spaces is that the latter are saved, identified with a titleso that they can be made available to participants at a later date, whereas the Chats are deleted after five days.

Both can be used from the Gmail account itself, but must be activated for use, something that can be done either from the app for mobile devices or from the Internet browser.

To activate Chats from the mobile app you have to follow these steps:

-Press on the icon with the three dots in the upper left corner.

-Access to the “Settings” option.

-Select the user account.

-Login in the “General” section.

-Disable “Show Chat and Spaces” (on Android) or activate “Show Chat and Spaces” (on iOS).

With that will appear at the bottom of the Gmail app screen two new options, next to Mail and Meet there will be two new icons – Chat and Spaces.

They can also be activated from a web browser with the following steps:

-Enter to “Settings” of the Gmail account (the gear icon in the upper right corner).

-Select “View all settings”.

-At the top of the menu select “Chat and Meet”. At this point there are three alternatives: Google Chat, Classic Hangouts and Disable, from which one must be selected.

-Accept under “Save changes”.

Next you have to configure the browser itself through the settings menu, activating the “Chat and Meet” option, which will appear on the left side of the Gmail menu. There will also appear highlighted contacts available to start a chat, with indication of whether they are active or disconnected.

Depending on the device there is also a different way to start the chat:

-From the mobile app: Click on the Chat icon and then click on “New Chat” (bottom right corner). There you can type the name of the contact with whom you want to start the conversation. If you want to start a group conversation, after selecting the first contact, click on the icon that will appear in the same field and type the name of another contact.

-From the web browser: Click on the button with the + symbol that appears in the corners of the Chat or Spaces. This will open a menu where you can simply type in the name of the contact you want to start a conversation with. You can also select the “Group conversation” option to add more members to the conversation.

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