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Zoom vs. Microsoft Teams vs. Google Meet
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(Pocket-lint) – Video conferencing software and applications are an essential means of communication for all kinds of people and businesses.
Whether you are in a long distance relationship, taking an online course, or working from home, you need a way to connect via video conference with others. Some of the most popular video conferencing solutions are products like Zoom, Microsoft Teams, and Google Meet (formerly Hangouts Meet).
To help you decide which one is best, we’ve pitted these three apps against each other and compared what they have to offer.
Zoom is a video conferencing service that you can use to meet other people virtually – whether by video or audio only or both, while conducting live chats. And it lets you record those sessions for later viewing. It was originally a niche service used primarily by corporate clients (more than half of Fortune 500 companies reportedly used Zoom in 2019). Now, however, Zoom has over 300 million daily users (figures as of 2020).
The rapid growth has seen Zoom become a global force, widely used by personal users as well as businesses and media companies.
When people talk about Zoom, you will usually hear the following phrases: Zoom Meeting and Zoom Room. Zoom meeting refers to a video conference meeting hosted using Zoom. You can join these meetings via webcam or phone. Meanwhile, a Zoom room is the physical hardware setup that allows businesses to schedule and initiate Zoom meetings from their conference rooms.
Apart from its low cost of use, what makes Zoom so attractive is that it is extremely simple and you can easily access it from your laptop or mobile devices. Its main features include the ability to host unlimited one-on-one meetings even with the free plan, meet with large groups, share your screen or audio, and even change your background to a personalized virtual image – no green screen required. .
Zoom has the best option for screen sharing and participant control in our opinion.
The desktop app is available for Windows and macOS, while the mobile app is available for Android and iOS, or it can run in a browser.
Zoom’s free tier allows unlimited one-on-one meetings but limits group sessions to 40 minutes and 100 participants. Paid plans start at $ 15 / £ 12 per month per host. Zoom Rooms requires an additional subscription in addition to a subscription and is more of a solution for large businesses.
Microsoft Teams started life as a chat-based workspace in Microsoft 365. It is intended for anyone who regularly uses M365. With an increase in the demand for video, it is now more associated with video conferencing.
Although it was originally intended as a business tool, it is now also open to personal users, i.e. video calls between friends and family, as an offshoot of those original business functions.
Teams is integrated with all Microsoft applications. It combines professional VoIP, collaboration and video functionality in one application. These are mostly sticky, sticky chats that you can then search for later – so you can keep track of everything without having to use email, which everyone thinks isn’t a great tool for collaboration.
Teams is designed to enable people to work more effectively together while using the integration of Microsoft 365 applications. You can do things like easily organize a meeting with calendars, create and share content, easily call team members, and more. Again. In terms of videoconferencing, it has the capacity to host calls with up to 10,000 members. It also offers screen sharing and call recording.
For personal users, you can make group calls, start group chats, and keep track of old conversations, including people who aren’t involved in the calls.
Microsoft Teams is compatible with Windows, macOS, Android, iOS and is also available on the web just like other Microsoft 365 apps.
Microsoft Teams is included with all Microsoft 365 plans (which start at $ 5 per user per month), but there is a freemium version of the service that includes support for up to 300 people. If you’re on the free tier, Microsoft has said you’ll get unlimited chat messages and searches. You also get key features like 10,000 searchable messages, 10 app integrations, 5GB of file storage, and 1: 1 video chats.
For personal use, all you need is a Microsoft account.
Google renamed Hangouts Meet to simply Google Meet in 2020. It is a video conferencing solution integrated with Gmail, YouTube, and Google Voice. There are also apps for iOS, Android and will work on most browsers. Essentially, it is a useful and profitable platform for small businesses as well as corporate clients. It has a very light and fast interface that allows you to easily manage up to 250 people in a meeting.
Google Meet can handle up to 250 participants per call, live stream to 100,000 viewers within a domain, and record meetings to Google Drive for later broadcast, for paid G Suite subscribers. Since Google Meet is available to all Google Account holders, that’s all you need to start a basic meeting for up to 100 participants.
G Suite organizers can set up calls through Google Calendar, meeting URLs or link codes, calls by phone numbers, and through dedicated Google Meet hardware like Chromebox and Chromebase. For G Suite Enterprise customers, each meeting has a dedicated phone number.
Google Meet has also been updated to include a Zoom type gallery view. While you could only see four people at a time before, Meet introduced a new tiled layout, allowing you to see 16 call participants at a time. It will allow screen sharing in various forms and Google will continue to strengthen the security of Meet through its position on the Google Cloud infrastructure. Google Meet does not offer all of the screen sharing options that Zoom offers.
Google Meet is available as an Android and iOS mobile app. You can also access Meet through Chrome, Mozilla, Microsoft, or Safari web browsers.
G Suite plans include access to Google Meet and start at $ 8 per user per month for the basic level (includes G Suite apps and 30 GB of cloud storage). Anyone with a Google Account will be able to access Google Meet for free, making 24-hour 1: 1 calls or 1-hour group calls with more than 3 users.
Which one is right for you?
Here’s your decision tree: Are you a regular, everyday consumer looking to stay in touch with friends and family? Then use Zoom or Google Meet. Are you leading a small group? These are also probably your best options.
Are you a G Suite user? Definitely use Google Meet.
Are you a Microsoft 365 user? Go with Microsoft Teams.
Are you a business or a school? You’re probably using G Suite or Microsoft 365, so use any video conferencing app included with your plan – but if not, there’s free access to Zoom and Google Meet to help.
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Honestly, Zoom and Google Meet are the fastest and easiest ways to start video calls using calendar links, meeting URLs, and phone numbers. You don’t even need to create an account with Zoom, although Meet does require at least a free Google Account, which Google says is a security feature. Microsoft Teams, on the other hand, really shines when a team has to jump on a video call from a discussion thread.
If you really want us to recommend a service for you to try, go with Zoom. It has become the platform of choice for many, from individuals to large media organizations who do live interviews. It also improves Google Meet when it comes to managing larger groups and offers better screen sharing options and controls.
Written by Maggie Tillman. Edited by Chris Hall. Originally published on .