Google has just taken steps to eliminate a small, but annoying aspect of Google+ Hangouts: keyboard sounds.
In an update launched today, Google will now mute your mic when you’re typing.
Google’s Tim Haloun explains it as such:
Does anyone actually like the sound of typing in a Hangout?
click click clack clack click clack clack!
If you’ve done Hangouts, you’ve almost certainly experienced it. It’s hard to chat over that typing. Maybe you’ve accidentally been that typist, and didn’t realize it until someone muted you! That’s why we’ve added automatic muting when you type. Specifically:
– If someone keeps typing in a Hangout, their mic will be muted until they stop
– They’ll see an in-Hangout notification, so they know they’re not interrupting the conversation
– We’ll do this for larger Hangouts (4+ people).
We hope this feature makes your Hangouts experience even more enjoyable, and we welcome your feedback in the comments!
Users will be unmuted “within a couple hundred milliseconds of the end of typing.”
The muting is triggered by the typing sounds, not the mere act of typing. And if you’re a quiet enough typer or use a headset mic, you’ll probably not trigger the mute.
If you’re a person who types and talks a lot while using Hangouts, Google”s Chee Chew has this to say:
“There are indeed cases where people want to type and talk. we’ve been dogfooding this internally within google, where we often have people presenting and such, so we’re sensitive to this concern. We find that the vast majority of times that happens in smaller hangouts where one person is showing something to someone else…which is why we turned this on for 4+ hangouts only.”