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From the author of Getting Started with Google+ Hangouts

Getting Started with Google+ Hangouts

Before getting started with Hangouts, be sure that you have all the required equipment, software, and plugins.

To use Google+ Hangouts, you must

  • Have a Google+ account. If you’re not on Google+ yet, go to http://http://www.google.com/+ and sign up in minutes.
  • Use a computer with a 2Ghz dual-core processor or greater and one of the following operating systems: Windows 7, Windows Vista with SP1 or later, Windows XP, Mac OS X 10.5+, Chrome, or Linux.
  • Have a webcam, microphone, and speakers. A headset is optional, but produces better audio results.
  • Use one of the following browsers: Google Chrome 10+, Microsoft Internet Explorer 8+, Mozilla Firefox 3+, or Safari 4+.
  • Have bandwidth of 900kbps (up/down) for one-on-one hangouts or 900kbps/1800kbps (up/down) for group hangouts.
  • Install the Google voice and video chat plugin (http://http://www.google.com/chat/video).
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