Alphabet Inc’s Google Wednesday stated any user would soon be able to host free video conferences on Meet, turning its previously business-solely tool into a bigger competitor to Zoom and others battling for users during the coronavirus outbreak.
Zoom Video Communications, Microsoft’s Skype and Facebook Messenger launched features this month to draw customers as people barred from going out to socialize seek free options to connect with friends and family by online video.
However, Meet, which has 100 million daily customers, had required a Google business or education account to set up calls. While Google has long offered free versions of business instruments along with Gmail and Google Docs, there has been no equal for Meet, and a newer service launched three years ago.
The corporate gradually will launch Meet in the coming weeks, and users can join landing.google.com/googlemeet to know when their account gains access.
Google has provided free video conferencing for nearly 12 years through its Hangouts service, but it features outdated security and expertise and its popularity has faded. The company also maintains Duo, a video calling app accessible solely on smartphones.
Smita Hashim, a director of product management at Google, stated in an interview that the company recommends users to use Meet over Hangouts.