9 Zoom Tips & Tricks

Zoom is a big part of life now. It’s still a great app for meetings, but it’s also for kids birthday parties, classes for all ages, big remote hangouts, and so much more. Here’s how you can get the most out of Zoom. 

Touch Up Your Appearance

Now you can enjoy the digital touch-up treatment movie and TV stars get, because Zoom can help make you look better by softening your features. Go to Settings, then Video, then check the box that reads Touch Up My Appearance. 

Set a Background

You can use a custom background image or gif if you want your Zoom call to be a bit fun. The file requirements to the image are pretty generous, as you can see here. Protip: after you’ve cleaned up the area where you regularly take Zoom calls, take a picture. If the space gets more untidy than you’d like, use the picture as a custom Zoom background. No one will know that your cat has occupied your filing cabinet. Although maybe at the end of the meeting, you can share your cat. Ending a Zoom meeting with a little cuteness is probably a good policy. 

Passwords Are Always On

As of this fall, Zoom has enabled passwords (and the waiting room feature) by default. 

Record Transcripts 

Whether you just want to record your child’s teacher’s instructions or you think it’d be cute to keep a recording of your kids talking to their grandparents, transcript recording is super easy. All you have to do is click the Record button at the bottom of the call (if the host has enabled recording). You can stop or pause at any time, and your recording will get saved to the cloud. 

See Everyone!

By default, you can see 25 other people at once. But by turning on gallery view, you can boost that to 49. You know, in case you’re at a Zoom dance party, Halloween get-together, family reunion . . . 

Share Computer Audio & Video

When you’re screen sharing, you can share specific applications, including their audio and video. So, if you want to watch something with someone over a Zoom call, you can. No doubt you’d rather be in the same room as your extended family for your annual Christmas viewing of Uncle Buck, but Zoom can work in a pinch. 

Enable Always Mute Microphone 

Want to make sure you join meetings or classrooms quietly? Then enable Always Mute Microphone. Just go to Audio Settings, then check the box that says Mute Microphone When Joining a Meeting towards the bottom of the screen. You can always unmute yourself when you’re ready to speak up, but this way you won’t have to fumble to mute yourself every time you join a call. 

Enable Always Turn Video Off

If you use Zoom to make calls more than videos, you can set up Zoom such that it has video off by default (but you can still enable it later if you want). Go to Video Settings, then check the box that reads Turn Off My Video When Joining a Meeting.

Always See Everyone’s Names

If you’re on calls with lots of people you don’t know or you need to learn their names (we have so, so much sympathy for teachers here!), you can set Zoom to automatically display names. Go to Settings, then Video, then check the box that reads Always Display Participant’s Name on Their Videos.

The Big Takeaway 

With just a few altered settings and a little extra time, you can make Zoom customised in a way that works best for you.