Even with limits on time, individuals and options, the free version of Google Meet nonetheless makes a compelling selection for video conferencing

In contrast with Google Meet in paid Google Workspace editions, the free version of Google Meet lacks options. It omits recording capabilities and limits you to conferences of as much as 100 those who final not more than 60 minutes. With the paid variations, you possibly can host bigger conferences (as much as 250 folks) that last more (as much as 24 hours), and you might file these conferences, as nicely. Paid editions additionally let folks dial-in, conduct polls and use breakout rooms. 

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However I am unsure that every one of these so-called limitations imply a lot. This is a have a look at 5 of the important thing options and capabilities provided within the free model of Google Meet.

Time restrict: 60 minutes

Free Google Meet classes finish after 60 minutes, whereas paid ones might last as long as 24 hours. For my part, the 60-minute restrict is a profit, not a constraint. Far too many conferences final too lengthy.

Want to satisfy longer? Schedule a number of extra hour-long calendar occasions. For instance, if you actually need a three-hour assembly, you’d schedule it as three separate calendar gadgets. Invite the identical set of individuals to every session. When one assembly ends, comply with the Google Meet hyperlink to proceed within the subsequent section.

Favor that individuals not discover you are utilizing the free model? Choose the Speedy conferences choice in Google Calendar to shorten the default size of calendar occasions (Determine A). An ordinary 30-minute assembly section will get scheduled as a 25-minute one, and a 60-minute session will get scheduled for under 50 minutes. That fifty minute time is definitely throughout the restrict of the 60-minute most for the Google Meet free model. Respect your assembly individuals’ time, and finish your session promptly.

Determine A

Screenshot of Google Calendar | Settings | Event settings | Speedy meetings selected, to make the default 50 minutes instead of 60 minutes.

In Google Calendar Settings, allow Speedy conferences to shorten the default length of calendar occasions.

One other different is to satisfy for shorter classes, extra usually. Use Google Calendar’s repeat assembly settings (Determine B) to create calendar occasions that recur each day, month-to-month, yearly or on a customized schedule. (I additionally recommend you connect a Google Doc to the calendar occasion. Give individuals enhancing permission, so everybody might edit assembly dialogue gadgets.)

Determine B

Screenshot of Google Calendar event, which shows repeat options: Does not repeat, Daily, Weekly on Thursday, Monthly on the third Thursday, Annually on July 15, Every weekday (Monday to Friday), and Custom.

As an alternative of occasional lengthy conferences, schedule shorter conferences that repeat periodically.

No recording: Lively consideration

Because the free version of Google Meet lacks recording, that implies that individuals want to concentrate. They must concentrate on the dialogue. OK, let me repeat that for these of you who have been glancing at your telephone or checking e mail throughout the assembly. I stated: There isn’t any recording. It is advisable to course of what folks say. Now. Within the current. In case you’re actually in an lively assembly, that is precisely the way you need issues to work. 

(Have to make a recording? See 4 will need to have instruments for creating video with a cell machine or The best way to file your browser window in Chrome, then add your video to Google Drive or YouTube and share it.)

Participant restrict: 100

In my expertise, when greater than a dozen or so folks collect, there’s near zero probability that each single individual concerned speaks for a significant period of time. Relying on the context, you would possibly name such a gathering a chat, a lecture, a presentation, a sermon or a monologue. The 100-person restrict (Determine C) actually is not a difficulty for conferences with lively individuals. If you might want to concurrently converse to various folks, you are not likely internet hosting a gathering—you are broadcasting. And that type of broadcast would possibly as nicely be pre-recorded after which shared for folks to view.

Determine C

Screenshot of a Google Calendar event, with a Meet session added. Arrow points at text that reads "Up to 100 participants" next to the Meet link.

The free model of Google Meet permits as much as 100 individuals.

Current: Tab, window or display

Presenting works the identical within the free version of Google Meet because it does within the paid editions. From Google Meet in a browser on a pc, you could have the choice to current content material from a browser tab (finest for video), a specific window (e.g., to demo an app), or your whole display (Determine D).

Determine D

Screenshot that shows the present icon active, with a menu of the three options: A tab (best for video and animation), A window, and Your entire screen.

Current a tab, a window or your whole display from the free version of Google Meet.


Moreover, the free version of Google Meet contains whiteboarding, similar to the paid editions (Determine E). You might both choose a beforehand saved whiteboard or create a brand new one that’s shared with everybody within the session. Illustrate your concepts, write key phrases, or add typed notes or photos to your board. (In case you’re acquainted with Google’s Jamboard {hardware} and software program, that is basically entry to that app inside Meet.)

Determine E

Screenshot of Google Meet with the Whiteboarding option screen displayed, with two options: Start a new whiteboard (top button), or Choose from Drive (bottom button).

Collaborate on a Jamboard drawing with everybody in your Meet session.

What’s your expertise?

Do you utilize the free or paid model of Google Meet? How usually do you discover any of the constraints a difficulty? How usually do you pursue different methods to collaborate (e.g., Gmail, Google Chat or a shared Doc) as a substitute of assembly? In case you use a paid model of Google Workspace, which expanded Meet options do you depend on most frequently? Let me know what your expertise with Google Meet has been, both within the feedback beneath or on Twitter (@awolber). 

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