General Guide to Using Zoom for Video Calls
Updated: a day ago
The pandemic has changed quite a bit in the way we do things in our everyday lives. One of those things is how we interact with friends and family.
There’s been less in-person and more video calls than ever, which has led to the popularity of a popular video chat application called Zoom.
Before the pandemic, Zoom was mainly used by businesses for online conferences, but because it’s one of the easier video call platforms to use, its use among consumers skyrocketed during the pandemic crisis.
To give you an example of how popular the application is, in December of 2019, it had 10 million daily users, by mid-April 2020, it had over 300 million daily users.
If you’ve had someone ask you to “join a Zoom call” or “Zoom me,” you’re probably wondering how to get started. You can always look into computer tutoring for seniors, or you can also take a look at my beginner’s guide to Zoom below for some tips.
Beginner’s Guide for Zoom Video Calls
1. Where to Get Zoom
You can download Zoom on your computer or mobile device from Zoom.us or your smartphone’s app store, respectively. The application is free to use. (The company makes money by offering more features on a paid plan, such as additional time for group calls.)
If you plan to host Zoom meetings, you will need to set up a user account for yourself by entering your email address and choosing a password. However, you do not need a Zoom account if you’re only planning to join in on others’ meetings by invitation.
2. How to Start a Meeting in Zoom
Once signed in, you can click on the “New Meeting” button to begin a new video call.
When that happens, you’ll see your video come up on screen and you’ll need to click the “Join with Computer Audio” button to hear other users.
You’ll be in the meeting by yourself until you invite others to join.
3. How to Invite People to My Zoom Meeting
If you’ve already started your meeting, click on the arrow next to the Participants icon. You’ll get a popup that says “Invite”. Click that and it will open an invitation window.
There are three ways you can invite people to join you:
1. If you already have them as a contact in Zoom, you’ll see their name on the invitation screen and can click it. Zoom will ring them and try to connect them to the meeting.
2. At the bottom of the window, click either “Copy Invite Link” or “Copy Invitation” (the invitation has more text in it along with the link). You can then paste the link into a text message or email to send it to the person.
3. You can click “Email” at the top of the invite window, choose the email application you want to use, and have Zoom email the invitation for you.
Make sure to make note of the meeting password that shows up in the bottom right corner of the invitation window.
4. How Do I Turn My Video or Microphone Off or On?
At the bottom of the video window, to the left, you’ll see a microphone icon and to the right of that, a video icon. Clicking on the mic will turn your microphone off. Clicking it again will turn it back on. When it’s off, you’ll see a red slash mark over the icon. The video icon works the same exact way. Just click to turn off and click again to turn back on.
5. How Can I Chat During the Video Call?
Sometimes when you’re on a video call with someone, they might say, “I just sent you the link in the chat.” But you look at the screen, and there is no chat window. This is because you have to open the chat panel.
At the bottom of the video window, look for an icon that says “Chat.” When you click that, a panel will open on the right side of the window with a chat area. You can type in the bottom to message the other person.
6. How Do I Make Sure My Call Is Private?
The rise of Zoom during the pandemic brought with it an unwelcome phenomenon called “Zoom-bombing.” This is when troublemakers join the Zoom meetings of people they don’t know, simply to cause disruption by shouting or showing inappropriate things.
You can keep your video call private by locking it after it starts.
After the people you’ve invited to the call are there, look to the bottom of the window, and click the “Security” icon. At the top of the popup, you’ll see an option to “Lock Meeting.” Click that to lock your meeting so no one else can join. Click it again to unlock it if you need to let someone in.
7. How Do I Join a Zoom Meeting?
The easiest way to join someone else’s Zoom meeting is by invitation. Just click the link they send you in the email. Another way is by opening Zoom on your computer or smartphone and clicking the “Join” button. You’ll then need to input the meeting ID that’s been provided by the host of the meeting. If there is a passcode for the meeting, you will need to enter it as well.
Become a Video Meeting Master with a Zoom Tutoring Session
Want your meetings to be fun instead of frustrating? Just set up a Zoom tutoring session and I’ll take you through everything you need to know for great video chats with friends and family.
Schedule a fun Zoom tutoring session today! Call or text me at: 862-368-4893 or Email me here.
STAY TUNED FOR MY INSTRUCTIONAL VIDEO ON USING ZOOM FOR SENIORS, COMING NEXT MONTH!
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