How Do I Use Google Meet to Start a Video Conference?

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Google Meet to Start a Video Conference

Google Meet is a video conferencing service offered by Google. It is one of the two apps that has replaced Google Hangouts and Google Chat which is fully integrated with Google Workspace.

It replaced the consumer-facing Google Duo, renamed as Meet with the earlier Meet is set to be phased out.

Let Us Look at How Google Meet Works

For the no-cost version of Google Meet, all participants need to be signed into a google account to be able to join in.

A Google account can be created with a work or personal email address. For customers on the Google Workspace, once you have created the meeting, you can invite anyone to join in even if they do not have a Google account.

It is a great solution for both individuals and businesses to meet on audio and video calls. It was born from Google Hangouts, but has some very unique features.

Originally, it was only available for enterprise users, but now, everyone can use Google Meet for free.

Google Meet is available on phones, tablets that run Android and IOS. The importance of such video meetings increased ten folds during the pandemic where physical attendance at schools and offices were restricted.

The best way was for all the users to be connected to their classes and work via Video Conferencing applications like Google Meet and Zoom.

What works in favor of Google Meet from Google Workspace was that it is completely free to use.

The camera and microphone features in the video conference could be enabled independently, which allowed the user for control during the meetings.

Using Google Meet of Google Workspace, adhoc calls could be made to friends and family. They could join by typing in the meeting code, or following the link that we would share with them.

One of the best things about Google Meet is that there is no need to install any software on the laptop or desktop that one uses. Everyone in the call, the organizer and the attender, would need a simple and modern web browser.

If you want to host a meeting for multiple people, use Google Meet. If you want to have a one-to-one conversation or video call with someone, either in a video call or text, then use Google Hangouts or Google Chat.

Google Meet Basic Features

Let us look at some of the features of Google Meet:

1. Stay Connected

The scheduling of a meeting is easy, the recording of the meeting is easy, the adaptive layouts help people stay engaged and connected.

2. Share the screen

Present documents, slides, and spreadsheets by showing your entire screen or just the window that you would want to share.

3. Host Large meetings

Much needed Team meetings, Town halls, where the meeting can take up to 250 internal or external participants to the meeting.

4. Join from your phone

The ease of joining the meeting, can be from the comfort of your mobile phone. This way you do not need to have a laptop or desktop to join into the meetings, giving us the much needed flexibility.

5. Take control

Owners of the meeting can decide who can join the meeting, and only members who are approved by the meeting owner, can join in.

6. Broadcast

Events such as town halls and sales meetings can be broadcast within your domain.

On the free plan, Google Meet supports meetings of up to one hour. One can create and join as many meetings.

So there’s nothing to stop one from hosting a second meeting if we hit the hour limit. Up to 100 participants can be in the same meeting. As a meeting organizer, we can mute other people, which we might want to do if the meetings reach that size.

Google Meet does its best to filter out any background noise that isn’t speech. It also has a live caption feature, which automatically captions what people say – it’s pretty reliable and great for accessibility.

Our screen shall be shared with everyone on the call. This can either be a specific window or the entire desktop, and it works the same on mobiles too.

From the security perspective, Google Meet claims that “video conferences are encrypted in transit” and that “our array of safety measures are continuously updated for added protection”. Business users get enterprise-grade security, but for the average user, the existing privacy settings are fine.

Paid users can have access to the gsuite subscription, that is more targeted for enterprise users. Some additional features that GSuite offers are:

  • 300 hours of video conference meeting length
  • 250 meeting participants
  • US or international Dial-in numbers
  • Meeting recordings saved on the Google Drive
  • 24/7 support

How Do We Start a Google Meet Call? 

  • Go to the Google Meet Website.
  • Click to start a new meeting. When prompted to enter the login, add in your Google Workspace account details, if we are not already signed in.
  • We can then see a waiting area.
  • The browser will ask if we should allow Google Meet to access the microphone and webcam. If we need them, then allow these. The Preview can give an idea of how the video would look.
  • A window pop-up will open with the link that can be shared with the others. Using this link, anyone can join into the call.

2 Ways to Join into a Google Meet Call

1. Use an invitation link

There should be a link to the video conference meeting that is shared by the organizer. If we are on the desktop, then the link will directly take us to the meeting where we need to login with the Google account details.

On the mobile or tablet, if there is a Google Meet app installed, tap the link to join into the meeting.

2. Use a Google Meet meeting code

The second method is to ask the meeting host to give us the meeting code. We can then enter this to join the meeting.

On desktop, go to the Google Meet website and input the code in the Enter meeting code field, then click Join.

On a mobile and tablet, launch the Google Meet app, tap Meeting code, input it in the field, then tap Join meeting.

For more information on Google Workspace collaboration tools, video conferencing and other digital tools, please visit Exabytes Malaysia.

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