New Updates for Google Meet!

If there’s one thing that gets Damson Cloud excited, it’s new updates. Google Meet has given us lots to talk about over recent weeks, continuing to release lots of new features in an attempt to become the most prominent and enterprise-friendly video conferencing solution on the market. Fintan Murphy takes us on a quick walkthrough of these new features, sharing some top tips along the way. Check out the full discussion in the video above and don’t forget to subscribe to our mailing list for more insights on changing the way we work!

We’ve been keeping our followers posted with all the latest updates coming from Google, and we’ve seen more and more come to Google Meet with each breaking week. This week is no different, with Google Meet announcing a series of fresh updates. Lots of these features are currently exclusive to Google Education. However, if you’re focussed on those nifty enterprise features, don’t panic: the vast majority of these features are also in the pipeline for the business space. These features represent a significant roadmap for the next six months, and we’re delighted that we’re finally able to discuss them!

Facilitating Education Across the World

Before we jump into the finer details of these updates, we wanted to highlight a statistic which we think is truly remarkable: Google now has 140 million educators and students using Google Meet on a regular basis, with 1,300 years of education video calls happening every single day on Google Meet. That is a truly unfathomable fact that is difficult to comprehend the scale of. The popularity of the product is obvious, and this is only set to continue with ongoing lockdown restrictions and a commitment to more improvement from the brains at Google.

Let’s get into the first update, soon to be rolled out for Google Education customers. This is the ‘knock-knock’ feature, and many of our followers may be familiar with this neat way of asking to join a Google Meet session. Teachers and educators will have greater control over this feature with the new update, with requests to join meetings now blocked after two failed attempts. 

Teachers will also have the power to end meetings as hosts of that meeting – a particularly welcome feature given widespread concerns about students rejoining meetings after their teacher had left. Anonymous users will also be prevented from joining, which carries obvious benefits for privacy and security. Don’t panic if your pupils need to join anonymously – you can opt in and out of this control feature as you wish.

Improvements in Admin Control

One feature we really love is the new ability to blur or totally change your background – perfect for messy rooms and those frequent occasions when we have to join a video conference at short notice. Beyond that, Google Meet users will soon be able to mute all participants. This is a really welcome development for meetings with lots of participants, and it’s something that both educators and business leaders have been asking for. Having the ability to mute everybody at once is absolutely vital, and we look forward to seeing how this new feature will improve video conferencing as a whole. 

Next up we have the ability to disable Chat within Google Meet – an optional feature which will be particularly useful to educators wishing to reduce distractions and wasted time. More useful, perhaps, is a new feature which allows full control over who is allowed to present on Google Meet. As a presenter you will want to have full control over this, and we imagine that teachers and educators will be equally pleased to see this development.

We also wanted to touch on three features that will really improve the convenience behind Google Meets. One of those is a digital hand-raising feature, which is really valuable in a classroom scenario – and that’s not to mention the new tiled view, which will accommodate up to 49 participants. We will also see the introduction of the collaborative whiteboard, which is really similar to Jamboard and will allow participants to collaborate by drawing on a shared digital space. 

The next updates we’d like to focus on are exclusive to Google Education and Enterprise for Education customers. We have attendance tracking, which is extremely useful and will provide most value to those working in an education or teaching environment. Breakout Rooms, Q&A and Polling are also on the way. Breakout Rooms allow you to break a chat into smaller rooms, and we’ve already seen the success of this kind of feature with Zoom, as well as the success of Q&A features that were already included in Google Slides. Needless to say, we can’t wait to see how these features will be built into Google Meet.

Finally, let’s talk about polling. The ability to poll your audience within a large group is extremely useful, and we’ve done this ourselves for online summits. It’s super useful as you can write the polls beforehand, and they tend to give you really useful information on your audience. What’s not to love?

Google Meet Updates

More About Damson Cloud

What do you think of the new updates to Google Meet? Are there any updates which you think Google should introduce to its video conferencing solution? We’d love to hear your opinion – so drop a comment in the box below!

As a longstanding member of the Google Cloud Partner program, Damson Cloud specialises in bringing people and ideas together through new ways of working. We champion change management and digital transformation using some of the internet’s most trusted solutions, including Google Workspace (formerly G Suite), Happeo and Jamboard. To find out more about our services, check out our library of tutorial videos or our blog.

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