Google Meet, alternative to Zoom, is free for everyone

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In this era, work from home is the new normal. And online video conferencing is the new face to face meeting.

Google announced recently that it is making Google Meet, its premium video meeting tool, available free of cost to everyone. Starting next week, Google announced that it would gradually open up Meet to anyone who has an email ID, and not necessarily a Gmail one.

Previously, Meet was available only to those that used Google’s G Suite productivity tools. Google is providing G Suite Essentials and all of these features free of charge through September 30.

In a blog post, Google said, “Starting in early May, anyone with an email address can sign up for Meet and enjoy many of the same features available to our business and education users, such as simple scheduling and screen sharing, real-time captions, and layouts that adapt to your preference, including an expanded tiled view.”

Recently, Sundar Pichai, the CEO of Alphabet, said that Meet was adding three million users each day and its usage had increased 30 times from January.

The free meetings on Meet can be scheduled for upto 100 participants for any amount of time. Also, due to the cross-app integration, it would be easier to create and join meetings from Google Calendar and Android or iOS apps.

Addressing its security features, Google added in the blog that Meet was “designed, built and operated to be secure at scale.” This comes in the wake of Zoom, Meet’s competitor, being plagued with privacy and security issues.

It would be interesting to see whether Meet meets upto the expectations and the demands of the huge population of the workforce that is currently working from home.

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