What You Need To Know About Using Zoom in Nigeria
And just like that, we’re all using Zoom. The video conferencing service has become vital social media for millions of users seemingly overnight. Once firmly a tool for hosting remote business meetings, Zoom is now connecting self-isolated individuals in a range of capacities.
Of course, those who are lucky enough to have retained their jobs through this period and are now working from home likely make up the primary user base, but classrooms are also switching to virtual lectures and attendance in an attempt to finish up the semester in one piece, while friends are congregating to organize isolated cocktail hours (quarantini, anyone?).
Zoom is currently the top free downloaded app in Apple’s app store, and according to data gathered by Learnbonds.com, a financial publication, downloads for Zoom increased by 1,270% between February 22 and March 22.
The authors of the report attribute the spike in downloads to many people working from home as a result of the issue we’ve all got at hand. That’s a total of nearly 17.2 million downloads on iOS and Android combined.
The Audience Age of Zoom Cloud Meeting
I really don’t know Why people are stanning Zoom so hard, when there are other video conferencing softwares available? Compared to Google Hangouts or Skype for Business, Zoom is fairly user friendly, it glitches the least, it offers many cool collaboration tools and it’s easy to connect to Slack and calendars on Google or Outlook.
The best feature, according to a rough scan of Twitter, is the ability to add a beauty filter of sorts, to “touch up” your Vitamin D-deprived, canned-bean-puffy face and look like a presentable human to your coworkers.
A close second for best features offered by Zoom is the ability to amuse yourself and others via customized backgrounds, harkening back to the early days of Macbook’s Photo Booth.
If you somehow don’t already have Zoom, but you’d like to quell your FOMO and schedule a virtual birthday party, teach a class or connect with coworkers more efficiently, here’s what you need to know:
Plans & Pricing
The Basic plan is pretty extensive, especially if you’re joining just to put the “social” in social distancing. You can host up to 100 participants and unlimited meetings, but the meetings only last for 40 minutes.
It offers video conferencing features like screen share, the ability to dial in from a telephone and, most importantly, use of virtual background and touch up (more on that later).
You can also record your meeting, use the hand raising function, schedule with Chrome extensions, group message and make use of a virtual whiteboard.
Pro — $14.99/ (NGN) 5,696 naira / month/meeting host:
Zoom says this is the best option for “small teams.” It’s got all the goods of the basic plan with a much longer meeting duration limit (24 hours!), plus the ability to create personal meeting IDs for recurring Zoom meetings. Max 300 participants, and min 10 hosts.
Zoom Business — $19.99/ (NGN) 7,596 naira / month/meeting host:
This is the best option for small to medium-sized businesses with multiple teams regularly scheduling Zoom meetings. Zoom Business, as its name suggests, allows businesses the chance to make use of their branding logos and up the ante with vanity URLs. Transcripts of Zoom meetings recorded in the cloud are a really nice touch.
Zoom Enterprise — Also $19.99/ (NGN) 7,596 naira month/meeting host:
This one’s for the big girls, or rather, businesses with 1,000 employees or more. Get unlimited cloud storage for recordings, a dedicated customer success manager, and 500 participants. Zoom Enterprise also provides executive business reviews, which Zoom describes as: “Detailed trending adoption analysis, ROI tracking, product roadmap discussion.” Presumably, the business people to whom Zoom is marketing this option know what that means and are jazzed by it.
How To Download Zoom :
- If you haven’t already been sent a meeting link, go to the download page, and from the Download Center, click on the Download button under “Zoom Client For Meetings”.
- This application will automatically download when you start your first Zoom Meeting.
- Once the download is complete, proceed with installing the Zoom application onto your computer.
How To Join a Meeting :
You can join a Zoom meeting in one of four ways, but just note that the host will have to start it up (or enable others to ‘join before host’) before you can join. Also note that you don’t need a sign in to join a meeting, as long as you have the meeting ID.
1) Via the Zoom app on your desktop.
2) Through a link via email invitation.
3) From the Zoom website.
4) Via telephone dial in.
How to Add a Fun BackGround :
Because you really don’t want to air your dirty laundry, dirty dishes or dirty countertops for your employers to see.
On Desktop App:
Go to ‘Preferences’ and click on ‘Virtual Background’ on the left. You can use one of the virtual backgrounds that Zoom provides, or you can upload your own photos.
On Mobile App:
While in a Zoom meeting, tap ‘More’ in the controls and then tap ‘Virtual Background.’ Tap the background you’d like to apply or tap ‘+’ to upload a new image. Tap ‘Close’ after selecting the background to return to the meeting.
On Using Zoom for Students
In light of the recent closures of schools and universities, Zoom is lifting the 40-minute meeting limit on free Basic accounts for nearly 60,000 K-12 schools in the U.S. When it comes to the virtual classroom, this can also be applied in Nigeria too.
Zoom recommends encouraging students to download and utilize the app on their desktops, rather than smartphones, because the screen is bigger.
Zoom has compiled a range of tips and tricks for educators using its product, but here are a few standout ways to utilize Zoom’s features for teaching:
Hand out the class agenda via Screen Sharing a document or slide at the beginning of class.
Utilize the Hand raising option to call on students, and use Chat to write down questions.
Use the Whiteboard or Annotate a shared document to let students engage as well. When sharing a whiteboard, document, screen, or image, try white boarding math problems or have a student use annotation to highlight items such as grammar mistakes in a paper you’re sharing.
Use Breakout Rooms to divide into smaller groups for discussions.
Allow students access to presenting in order to share projects with the class.
Some Zoom Pro Tips
- Check “turn off video when joining a meeting” so your face doesn’t just show up on a huge projector screen during an all-hands meeting…you know…if anyone is still somehow meeting in person.
- Do remember to mute yourself when not talking.
- Do make sure to look behind you before sharing your video so that you avoid any embarrassing mishaps.
- If using for business, and your team uses Slack to communicate in real time, consider integrating Zoom and Slack. You can type “/zoom” into Slack and a meeting link will appear directly in your Slack conversation for you and a teammate to join.