Working from home isn’t exactly the most fun, but at least with video conferencing, you get the illusion of atmosphere. It seems the whole world has jumped on Zoom, the video app that is helping bridge the home and office, and it isn’t just workers cashing in. People are holding remote games nights, virtual bars, hell, even Will Smith hosted a Fresh Prince reunion on Zoom. But Google may be about to rock the boat. The tech giant has just made its video conferencing service, Google Meet free to anybody, instead of just offering it to enterprise and education customers through G Suite.
Even better still, Google Meets lets anyone with a Google account to host a free meeting of up to 100 people for as long as they want. The trick to avoiding the ‘Zoom-bombing’ trend is the account status. People won’t just be able to click a link and join a meeting, they’ll need to be logged in.
The interface is also pretty slick, with a Brady-Bunch-esque gallery view making it easy to see all participants. In addition to the consumer availability for Meet, Google is unveiling a new tier for G Suite that it’s calling “G Suite Essentials,” which includes Meet and also Google Drive, but not Gmail. All current G Suite customers will still have free access to Meet through September 30th.
If you’re getting sick of people crashing your Zoom meetings, Google Meet might be the way to go. It bears reminding though, you can’t add a hilarious background, which is just devastating.