Online video chatting services have become more important than ever. They’re an essential part of staying in touch with family and friends while social distancing. They also enable people to have meetings while working from home.
Zoom, a popular video conferencing software, has been around for a while. But the number of its monthly users has exploded at the start of the year.
People have turned to the app at a record rate, allowing Zoom to increase its user base by 21% since the end of 2019. But there’s more to it than just seeing loved ones over a screen or having a quick team meeting. Zoom has many useful applications and a few neat tricks that not everyone may know about.
Here are some pro Zoom tips that can help anyone make the most out of their Zoom experience, whether free or paid.
Thanks to tools like Zoom, it is possible to build meaningful work relationships and see friends from all over the world. Zoom is a cloud-based video conferencing service. People use it for webinars, video or audio-only conference meetings, and live chat.
According to the company’s S-1 filing, more than half of Fortune 500 companies used Zoom in 2019. And this service isn’t useful for business meetings and webinars only. But it does cater more towards company needs.
Thanks to its free account type, Zoom is also an excellent tool for individual people who want to talk to friends or family. Freelancers and gig workers can make use of the service for free, too, so long as they keep meetings with three or more participants under 40 minutes.
But keep in mind that hackers can find ways to hack into video conferencing technology or hijack someone’s network while they’re using it. Don’t make outsiders privy to those private conversations — use a VPN. VPN technology protects its users from peeping toms by encrypting their network connection. It is especially crucial for people who make video calls on an open WiFi network.
One of Zoom’s most useful features is its ability to integrate with other tools. Both Slack and Zapier are two great options for businesses that also use Zoom.
Slack integration allows team members to start meetings from right inside the app. It also reminds others of impending meetings.
Zapier adds a whole bunch of other app integrations, which can be useful. For instance, you can use Google Calendar integration to send people the Zoom meeting link and to remind them of upcoming meetings too.
The desktop version of Zoom allows many handy shortcuts to save time. For example, pressing Alt+I (⌘Cmd+I on Mac) opens the invite menu from inside a meeting. Here’s a full list of all the keyboard shortcuts that Zoom supports.
If the meeting is a webinar, involves 100+ people, or you’re recording it, then there’s plenty of reasons to want to mute everyone but the speaker. The meeting host can mute everyone by using the Alt+M shortcut (⌘Cmd+Ctrl+M on Mac).
Pretty much everyone’s familiar with screen sharing in online video calls by now. But Zoom also lets people pause their sharing. It means the screen freezes for everyone else except for the person sharing. Resuming the sharing brings the screen back to real-time.
It is another nice setting that Zoom supports. Much like on the phone, the program can “soften” up a person’s appearance a little to make their skin look better with a filter. Find the Touch Up My Appearance option in the settings menu under the Video tab.
As mentioned, you can always record Zoom meetings. It is useful for webinars or people who miss an important meeting. But more than that, Zoom can also auto-transcribe the audio of a meeting. The meeting host can edit and share the transcribed recording with everyone.
It is another fun trick that anyone can use while in a Zoom meeting. It allows people to upload any image they want and use it as their background for the meeting. A tranquil forest or the company logo — anything goes. You don’t need a green screen for that.
Zoom is a useful video conferencing tool used by many people for various purposes. With these helpful tips, everyone can get even more out of their Zoom app.