Reuters file photo
BIRMINGHAM: Google made its business video conferencing service free to all users, ramping up competition for Zoom as people flock online to stay connected during the pandemic.
Google Meet had previously been reserved for subscribers to the premium G Suite software tools for businesses.
Meet will be available “to all users around the world, to enable people from all walks of life to communicate, collaborate and really stay in touch more effectively through the pandemic,” G Suite vice president Javier Soltaro told AFP.
Google touted security and reliability features of Meet, and its foundation in the California-based internet giant’s computing cloud.
Use of video calls and conferencing has rocketed as people work, learn, and socialize remotely while staying home to avoid the coronavirus.
Many people have turned to Zoom, which has scrambled to stem security problems such as data hacking and harassment by individuals who crash sessions in what is referred to as “Zoombombing.”
Google said in a blog post that it has “invested years in making Meet a secure and reliable video conferencing solution that’s trusted by schools, governments and enterprises around the world.”