Updated Google Meet Launched
Google announced an important update to Google Meet, its video-conferencing service update brings many user interface changes for desktop users, also quite a bit of new functionality as well. This includes features like multi-pinning so that users can focus on several feeds in place of just one.
The new AI-driven video capabilities for light adjustments, autozoom, and a new Data Saver feature that reduces data usage on slower mobile networks.
Making Video Conferencing “More Immersive”
Google also noted that today’s release was meant to make video conferences “more immersive, inclusive and productive.” The latest UI is not going to be a radical change, but it puts more of the controls and features right at the user’s fingertips instead of hiding them in a menu. It also brings them in the bottom row in place of the present system that spreads out features between the main menu bar and an additional small menu on the top.
For presenters who do not want to see themselves on the screen, Google Meet will now let users minimize or completely hide their own video feed. And if one really wants to glance into their own eyes, they can also pin their feed to the rest of the grid. Google says it also plans to let users turn off their self-feed across all Google Meet calls.
Talking about pinning, one feature that seems particularly useful is the ability to focus on multiple feeds. This new multi-pinning feature will make it easier to highlight the participants in a chat that are most active, for example. This feature will roll out in the upcoming weeks.
New Background Replacement Feature
And coming in a few months, some of those highlighted feeds may look a bit more interesting. One new feature Google has planned but has not rolled out yet is video background replacement. For now, Google will only offer three scenes: a classroom, a party, and a forest.
The firm says more will follow, but it does not look like users will be able to bring their own videos to this feature anytime soon.
Other latest features in this will release include Google Meet’s ability to automatically tidy up users’ video feed a bit to make sure they’re more visible in a dark environment and improve users’ video when they are sitting in front of a bright background. This will roll out in the coming weeks. There’s also the latest feature of autozoom, which uses AI to automatically zoom in on users and put them in the middle of their frame. That is coming to paid Google Workspace subscribers in the coming months.