With the recent coronavirus outbreak, many people have been asked to work remotely, schools have been taken offline to online and social distancing has forced many individuals to communicate differently – which brings in video conferencing.
Zoom is the leader in modern enterprise video communications, with an easy,
reliable cloud platform for video and audio conferencing, chat, and webinars. A Zoom meeting is a virtual meeting where one person hosts and all other participants have equal footing. The host can share hosting responsibilities with other participants. Any participant can share their screen.
Zoom users can choose to record sessions, collaborate on projects, and share or annotate on one another’s screens, all with one easy-to-use platform. Zoom offers quality video, audio, and a wireless screen-sharing performance across Windows, Mac, Linux, iOS, Android, Blackberry, Zoom Rooms, and H.
To use Zoom you will need: a video camera, either built in to your device (cell phone) or a separate webcam – most modern computers, smartphones and tablets have this built in.
A Zoom account is not required to join a meeting as a participant. The basic tier is FREE. Having your own account will allow you to host your own meetings or schedule a meeting. There are four plans available; the most popular now likely being the free tier, in which virtual meetings can be held with up to 100 participants, 1-on-1 meetings without a time limit are possible, and meetings with multiple participants can be held for up to 40 minutes. (When your time is up, you can simply restart a meeting). The free option also allows users to conduct meetings in HD video and with audio, participants can join via their PC or a telephone line, and both desktops and apps can be shared. It is possible to join a meeting just from your browser, but in the interests of longevity and avoiding browser limitations, you should download the application.
To start using Zoom, make your choice (browser or download) and then choose to sign up. You will be prompted to type in your email or sign in through either Google or Facebook. At the next prompt, Zoom will ask for permission to send resources including product videos and how-to guides your way. Either click “confirm” or “Set Preferences;” the latter option being to receive emails once a week, once a month, or never. Make your selection.
By now, a confirmation email should have landed in your inbox. Open the message, click “Activate Account” or paste the included confirmation link into your browser, and then at the next prompt, you will need to complete account creation with your name and a strong password. If you wish, on the next screen, you can invite your colleagues to also create an account. If not, click “Skip this step.”
Remove the requirement to “ask for a meeting password”.
Sign in to the Zoom web portal and navigate to Meetings. Click Personal Meeting Room. Click Edit this Meeting. Under Meeting Options, edit the password.
Now you can choose to create a test meeting if you like, as well as add Zoom as an extension. There are various plugins available including a Google Chrome extension, Mozilla Firefox extension, Microsoft Outlook plugin, and IBM Notes plugin. If you will be using Zoom for the foreseeable future for work purposes, you may want to select and install appropriate add-ons now.
Once you’ve launched your test meeting, you will be met with a screen containing the meeting’s URL and the option to invite others. For now, head over to the web portal, zoom.us, to
make sure that the correct settings are enabled — and that you
know how to create and launch a meeting.
The Zoom support page has all the info you’ll need.