There is a new application on Facebook that is similar to the video chatting available on Google Hangouts. Created over the course of the weekend during the HAPI hackathon in San Francisco, the application was created by the same people who operate TinyPay.me, an e-commerce site.
Unlike Google Hangouts, though, Groupchat.tv supports up to 50 video streams simultaneously. However, the creators of the application recommend that users don’t actually push the new application quite that far. Still, it’s an improvement for some on the 10-person limit of Google Hangouts, particularly for people like musicians who are using the group video chats for intimate acoustic performances.
There are some differences in the use of the two applications. For example, in order to use Google Hangouts, you have to actually start a “Hangout” (or a video group chat session) and then share it with people in your Circles to invite them to join. In order to use the new Groupchat.tv, you have to first authorize the application on Facebook and then share a particular link that it will generate with your friends on Facebook. While you can share this link in any way (instant messaging, e-mail, Facebook message), the application will provide you with a Facebook status update box. This can make it easier to share with your Facebook friends.
The applications developers are already talking about adding new features to the application in the future, but for now, they are just hoping the new video chat option takes off and become successful. Many people are speculating that this new feature will put a damper in Google Plus’s threat to Facebook since Google Hangouts is one of the key selling points to Google Plus. What do you think?