Contact pinning and more arrive for Hangouts in Gmail

Several improvements are rolling out for Hangouts in Gmail today, which includes contact pinning functionality and a new tab for easy access to your online buddies.

There are now two tabs in the desktop version of Hangouts in Gmail: Hangouts Contacts and Hangouts Conversations. Both tabs are self-explanatory, but the update makes it easier to see who's online currently.

Contact pinning is also a thing in Hangouts as of today, and it's simple to send your favourite contacts right to the top, just hit the drop-down menu on your desired contact and click on "Pin to top". Wollah!
Unfortunately, it doesn't seem like today's improvements are making their way to other desktop Hangouts properties (Google+, Chrome extension) as of yet, but here's hoping that changes soon.

YouTube will soon let you import your Google+ videos

YouTube is currently rolling out a new tool which imports your Google+ videos and uploads them on the video-sharing site.

First reported by +Nedas Petravińćius, the button will be found in a prominent place on the YouTube Upload page under a "Import videos" header with a large Google+ logo. You can't miss it.

When pressed, you'll be greeted with the usual Google+ filters to select from: All videos, Auto Backup or Albums. Multiple can be selected and uploaded at a time, and goes through the usual steps (options to add title, description and tags etc) like when you upload a video the standard way.

Moderation tools added to Google+ Communities' search feature

Life has gotten a little bit easier for Google+ community moderators today thanks to an update which enables moderation tools on posts when using the community search feature.

All the basics are there, just like when moderating from the community's home stream. For a reminder, moderators have the option to:
  • Remove a post
  • Remove, report and ban
  • Ban member
  • Pin post
Today's update basically enables moderators to use these privileges directly from search results. Note that this feature is currently only available on the desktop version of Google+.

Server-side update enables Google+ stream casting

Last week, Google+ for Android was updated to 4.5 with no new features, but a focus on a buttery smooth experience. Today, Google has flipped the switch on a feature which allows you to cast the stream to your TV.

If you've got the latest version of Google+ and own a Chromecast, look out for the Google Cast icon where the search button appeared on previous versions (hint - it's next to the drop-down menu underneath the action bar).
Keep your eye out for the Google Cast icon
When you've hit the button, you'll see content from your stream on the television with full-screen images, brief excerpts of text from posts complete with profile photos and all. The stream flicks from one post to another every minute or so, but you can manually 'next' content from your Android device.