As interest in meetings exploded during the COVID-19 crisis, several video conferencing apps have appeared extensively and all want our attention However, the most popular apps, such as Zoom, Microsoft Teams, and Google Meet, are top contenders in the race. These cloud-based tools offer all the standard features for conducting online meetings.
In the race to the top of video conferencing, Google Meet and Teams are defeating Zoom in many aspects. While Zoom started facing operational challenges, Teams and Google continued to make strides with features that attracted more users.
Zoom has many great features, but it needs to be more powerful for business operations. Zoombombing and security problems have also been issues. As of June 14, 2020, Microsoft Teams had grown 900%, and Zoom had only grown 600% from their base use on Feb. 17, according to Aternity data.
Features That Zoom Fails To Have Which Causes Problems
Zoom is free, but the free version has various limitations, including limiting meetings to 40 minutes. Apart from this, Zoom is a basic video conferencing app that, most of the time, needs to be improved for business operations. But what largely holds Zoom back is that it doesn't have a business ecosystem behind it that companies can adopt:
Microsoft 365 For Business
Microsoft Teams includes every version of Microsoft 365 for business, including the cheapest tier. If your company pays for a Microsoft Office subscription, you already have access to Teams. Microsoft 365 is an amazing workspace, which Zoom has yet to offer.
G Workspace By Google
Google Meet supports all Google Workspace (G Suite) plans. If you're already paying for Gmail and Google Drive, you have the full version of Google Meet. That makes Meet worth checking out, especially if you're using the free version of Zoom and need fewer limitations.
Google Meet has features that Zoom doesn't have.
Google Meet's interface has a prominent captions button. Click it, and you'll see a transcript of every word said. It's magic.
Google has been refining its voice transcription for over a decade in services like Google Voice and Google Assistant, which gives them a huge head start here. The captions could be more accurate, but they were surprisingly close in tests. And there's a real-time profanity filter, which, if nothing else, is just fun to play with.
The software photography features on Google's Pixel phones are some of the best, particularly the low-light mode. Google puts this same tech to work in Meet, which is great for late-night meetings or just rooms with bad lighting.
There's nothing worse than logging into a call, saying hello, and not being able to respond because you still need to test your settings. Google Meet offers a landing page to test audio and video before you join a call, and I find it handy. Your and the meeting host's settings need to be aligned in a way that helps figure it out. It's not a feature Zoom doesn't have, but Google Meet, by default, has it.
Start A Meeting By Typing "meet.new" In Your Browser
This one's a bit of a gimmick, but it's convenient. You can start a meeting by opening a new tab in your browser and typing meet. new. It's the fastest way to start a meeting in any video conferencing service.
Zoom is a desktop app you install, but Google Meet runs in your browser. You can argue about the relative merits of both approaches yet prefer desktop apps in most cases. But Google Meet running in the browser means that third-party extensions can add features.
Teams features Zoom doesn't have.
Teams include a bunch of video features that Zoom doesn't. There are real-time captions, built-in meeting notes, and an amazing feature where you can pretend you're in the same room as your coworkers.
Persistent Chat With Rich Formatting, Including Memes
Microsoft Teams' chat for meetings has more formatting features than any other video conferencing app. Microsoft Teams meetings' chat is much less ephemeral than Zoom chat. It disappears more or less after the call unless you save it manually. With Teams, you can review the comments after the meeting, and any points made there can be found using search alongside the rest of your chats. Zoom doesn't allow tracking helpful links and information after meetings, so it's easy to see why this feature is useful.
However, it's not all fun and games. Microsoft Teams also keeps a chat record from every meeting and posts comments in the channel.
Built-in Meeting Notes
Zoom is only a video conferencing app. But Microsoft Teams is built around the idea that it will be the only tool you use for collaboration: team chat, video calls, and internal documentation. Microsoft's philosophy means you get things like a built-in tool for taking notes.
Zoom lets you switch between Speaker View and Gallery View, so you can see the person talking or everyone at once. But Microsoft Teams adds another option to this: “Together Mode". Everyone on the call is shown as though they're sitting next to each other in some kind of classroom.
Microsoft Teams offers custom backgrounds for meetings. Just click a box, and everything will be obscured but not replaced. It's exactly what I need, and Zoom doesn't offer it.
Microsoft Teams offers real-time captions, meaning you can follow along with the meeting even if you can't hear. Just turn on the feature, and you'll see the captions at the bottom of the screen. Although Zoom offers a closed captioning feature, someone must type them out manually.
Why Did Major Corporations Ban Zoom?
Although Zoom is well known and used by many, there are other video conferencing apps. Many major organisations and corporations, including Taiwan, SpaceX, and the UK's Ministry of Defense, have switched to other video conferencing apps. Thus, it would be best if you thought twice about sticking with Zoom for the following reasons:
Zoombombing is entering a meeting uninvited and engaging in obscene or disruptive behaviour. It was widely reported at the start of the pandemic. But the process continues today. It is one of the biggest issues that Zoom has been facing for a long time. As we all know, the virus has forced most business activity and meetings into the online environment. Unfortunately, many of these businesses need to understand the importance of security when it comes to passwords to enter a call. Zoom has tried to address the problem with passwords and waiting areas but has yet to succeed.
History of Fraud and Errors
The FTC and Zoom reached a settlement in February 2021 after a report claimed that Zoom had broken numerous security rules. Under this pact, Zoom made improvements and minor changes to the platform. But the report claims Zoom makes false claims about offering E2EE encryption. Even worse, it provides little of the sort, conceals users' recorded video conferences from prying eyes, and sneakily install software on hardware. Thus, Zoom can remain on a computer after users uninstall it.
Zoom Collects and Shares Large Amounts of Data
You might be surprised by Zoom's data collection policies if you still need to review them. They collect and share email addresses and information uploaded during video conferences and chats. It's even worse if you signed up for Zoom through your Facebook or Google account, which gives Zoom access to any data collected by those companies.
Although Zoom offers a form of end-to-end encryption for meetings, it isn't enabled by default. Unless you enable it, your conference will only utilise Zoom's "enhanced encryption," a much less secure protocol.