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Google Meet Free Access Rollout Complete, Gmail Integration to Arrive in Few Days

Google Meet was recently made free to everyone with a Google account in a bid to leverage from the new norm of working from home. The rollout was conducted in a staged manner, and Google has now confirmed that the rollout of this free access to everyone is complete. This means that anyone with a Google account can start a video call easily at meet.google.com. The company looks to take on Zoom and Microsoft Teams with this new free access. Earlier, Google Meet was only accessible by enterprise and education customers via G Suite.

Google Meet is now accessible for free alongside premium features like simple scheduling, screen sharing, real-time captions, and layouts that adapt to your preference. Live captioning looks to make Google Meet more accessible to varied users like those with hearing loss. There is also a new low-light mode that has been added in Google Meet that can automatically adjust your video to make you more visible to others. The tech giant took to its blog to confirm that the rollout for free access of all these features is now complete.

Google Meet vs Zoom: Free Plans Compared

While you can access Meet on the Web via meet.google.com, the app is also available as a free download from App Store and Google Play Store. Users will need to have a Google account to start using Google Meet though, and if you don’t have one, it’s best to get one created. Google also notes that Meet will be accessible via Gmail in the coming days. This feature was introduced earlier this month for enterprise and education accounts, but it is now set to be available for free for all users. This new Meet integration should show up in the left sidebar panel in Gmail, and it will allow users to ‘start a meeting’ or ‘join a meeting’ without having to switch between apps. Google essentially looks to ease the process of starting a video meeting with this new feature.

Ever since Google Meet was made free two weeks ago, the tech giant has seen daily usage grow by 30x, with Meet hosting 3 billion minutes of video meetings daily. Last month, the company had said that it was adding roughly 3 million new users every day.

How are we staying sane during this Coronavirus lockdown? We discussed this on Orbital, our weekly technology podcast, which you can subscribe to via Apple Podcasts or RSS, download the episode, or just hit the play button below.

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