Google announced a new feature for Hangouts on Air today called Applause, which lets viewers give a thumbs up or down to the content they’re viewing during a live video broadcast. In addition to sharing cheers and jeers, this new features lets the search giant generate a real-time chart documenting the audience’s feedback as it happens. Despite looking like a game of Guitar Hero, the colorful graph gives broadcasters an easy way to monitor viewers’ feelings about their efforts. Think of it as a modern-day version of The Gong Show.
Applause, along with other Hangouts on Air features like Q&A and Showcase are changing the way that people use Hangouts to interact with a live audience. You can now solicit questions from viewers or pitch related merchandise to spectators when promoting a new product, all while allowing people to openly tell you what they think.