Applications like Zoom, Microsoft Teams, or the Google Meet have existed for quite some time now. But it was during the pandemic when these applications saw massive growth in their userbase. As the world focused more and more on work-from-home or remote work, apps like Zoom became more crucial for everyone.
Zoom is an excellent application to host video meetings regardless of whether its purpose is. You can use zoom to run your business, host corporate meetings or teach your students remotely or even attend classes from far away if you are the student. This guide will introduce you to Zoom, talk about its various aspects, and also take you over the basics of Zoom.
Thus, without further ado, let’s proceed with the guide on how you can easily use Zoom on your Windows 11 computer.
What is Zoom and Why Should You Use Zoom?
Zoom can be described as a cloud-based video communication program that is available for computers as well as mobile devices. The program was first released nearly a decade ago, on December 10, 2012. Although, as stated before, the app gained the most of its fame and userbase during the pandemic.
Now, when it comes to the question of why you should use Zoom, here are a few reasons to do so:
- The Application is primarily free to use and has numerious premium subscription options with added benefits that is catored towards specific uses. This means you are most likely to find a plan best suited for your needs.
- The application is supported across all devices over multiple platforms like the Windows, macOS and Android.
- Zoom lets you place participants in an virtual waiting room before they can join the meeting.
- With zoom upto 49 people can be featured on screen.
- With Zoom you can record your video conference and store them in cloud storage foe future use.
- Zoom allows the hosted video conferences to be shared or stream on social media platforms like Facebook.
- Zoom has bulit-in collaboration tools and engagement tools which further enriches the experience and helps in managing the conference.
Zoom Plans and Pricing
If you want you can use Zoom without even spending a dime. But Zoom also offers different paid subscription options for people who want to do more with the program. Zoom has different plans for general use, for educators, for healthcare, and for developers. If you want, you can visit the pricing section of their website and browse through all the available plans.
Here, we will quickly go through the plans for general uses, their prices, and offerings. First, there is the ‘BASIC’ plan that lets you host unlimited group meetings. Although, the maximum time limit for those meetings will be 40 minutes and a maximum of 100 people will be able to join. You will also be able to participate in private and group chat rooms.
Next is the ‘PRO’ plan which costs Rupees 1300 or USD 14.99/month per license and it along with all the features of the ‘BASIC’ plan, allows you to do other things like streaming your social media or 1 Gigabyte of cloud storage to store recordings of video meetings.
After that, there is the ‘BUSINESS’ or ‘ENTERPRISE’ plan, both costing Rupees 1800 or USD 18.99/month per license. These plans add more features suited for large-scale businesses like increasing the meeting participant limit up to 300 or 500 in case of the ‘ENTERPRISE’ plan.
What are the Requirements for Running Zoom?
The developers of Zoom have built the program in a way that it can run on almost any device. Although there are some recommended specifications that the developers have stated are required in order for the application to run smoothly on your Windows 11 computer. Here are the suggested requirements:
- Processor: Dual-Core Intel/AMD processor or higher
- RAM: 4 Gigabytes or higher
- Built-in, USB or Wireless headset/Speaker for audio output
- Built-in, USB or Wireless microphone for audio input
- Built-in, USB or Wireless video capture device
Apart from the hardware requirements, of course, you will need an active internet connection. But the speed or bandwidth needed may vary depending on what you do. A simple audio call can be easily done with a connection of 1Mbps. But if you want an HD or 720p video call with screen sharing you will need a 2.5 to 3 Mbps connection. And in the case of a Full HD or 1080p call with screen sharing the requirement can go up 4-5Mbps.
Download and Install Zoom on your Windows 11 PC
Before you can join or create your own could video conference, you must have the Zoom client installed on your computer. Now, in Windows 11, there are two ways you can install Zoom on your computer. You can either use your internet browser and download Zoom from its official website or you can use the Microsoft Store to install Zoom. We will demonstrate both ways so you can do it however you like it.
If you want to use the Microsoft Store to install Zoom then open up the Store by searching for it in the Start Menu search and selecting it from the search results.
After the Microsoft Store window opens, type ‘Zoom’ inside the search bar on the top of the window and then select the ‘Zoom Cloud Meetings’ app from the search results.
After that, click on the ‘Install’ button and the app will start to download and install on your computer.
Wait for the download to finish, which should not take more than 2-3 minutes and it will be installed on your computer.
Now you can type ‘Zoom’ on the Start Menu search and you will it appear in the search results. You have successfully installed Zoom on your computer. You can open the application by simply clicking on it once from the search results.
Alternatively, you can download the Zoom installer from the official website as well. Go to zoom.us/download in a new tab in your web browser.
Once you are on the ‘Download Center’ page, you will see the ‘Zoom Client for Meetings’ on top of the list of available downloads. Click on the blue ‘Download’ button below it.
After that, double-click on the installer, and the installation process will begin.
Another window will appear and it will say ‘The installation was successful’. If you want to enable auto-updates for Zoom, you can check the box that says ‘Automatically keep up to date’ and then select ‘Slow’ or ‘Fast’ from the dropdown menu next to it. After that, click on ‘Done’ and close the window.
After that, you can either sign in to your Zoom account or join a meeting directly using a room code or a link.
The Basic Operations of Zoom
After you sign into the Zoom client on your computer, you will be presented with the home screen. From here, you can perform multiple actions. You can either host a meeting or join an existing one with the meeting ID or a join link. You can even schedule a meeting for the future using this menu. In this part of the guide, we will demonstrate how you perform some of these actions by yourself.
Add People to your Zoom Contacts List
Zoom has a Contacts list feature where you can add other zoom users and it makes inviting them to your meetings or joining their meetings easier. To add another user to your contact list, first, switch over to the ‘Contacts’ tab by clicking on the icon.
After that, click on the small ‘+’ icon and then select ‘Invite a Zoom Contact’.
After that, a small window will appear called ‘Invite to Zoom’. To add another user to your Zoom contacts list, you must know their email address. Enter their email address inside the ‘Email’ textbox and then click on the ‘Invite’ button to send an invite.
Now, the window will say that an invite has been sent to the user.
After that, if you expand the ‘External’ list under the contacts section, you can see that the invite is still pending.
Once the person whom you added, accepts the contact request, you will receive a notification. Now they are added to your contact list and you can either start a conversation with them or invite them to a meeting.
How to Host a Meeting on Zoom
Once you are on the Zoom homepage you can start a meeting by clicking on the ‘New Meeting’ icon. If you want to start the meeting without your camera turned on, click on the small drop-down arrow below the orange icon and next to the ‘New Meeting’ text and uncheck the ‘Start with video’ option. From here, you can also choose to use your Personal Meeting ID if you want to.
After that, the main ‘Zoom Meeting’ window will open, and inside that window, there will be another smaller window labeled as ‘Join Audio’. This window allows you to join the meeting with default audio settings, or you can test the audio input and output devices if you want.
Generally, it is a good idea to check your audio devices before you enter a meeting to avoid running into any audio issues once the meeting starts. Click on the ‘Test Speaker and Microphone’ text below the blue ‘Join with Computer Audio’ button to proceed to test your audio devices.
Now, the window will play audio that you are supposed to be able to hear. If you clearly hear that audio then you can finish this part of the test by clicking on the blue ‘Yes’ button.
Next, it is time to test your audio input device or your microphone. Here also your default audio input will be selected first. You can say anything you want and look carefully if the ‘Input Level’ meter goes up. This will be your indicator to check your microphone is able to hear your voice. As additional confirmation, whatever you say will also be repeated for you to hear.
After you are done setting up your audio output and input device you will be presented with the main Zoom interface. From here you can perform multiple actions with the options that are available here.
How to Mute/Unmute Microphone or Switch Audio Device in Zoom
If you are in a meeting and you are not participating in a conversation, it is a good practice to keep your microphone muted. It is very easy and you can do that by simply clicking on the microphone icon located on the bottom-left corner of the ‘Zoom Meeting’ window.
Now, if you want to unmute yourself then you can do that by clicking on the same mic button once again.
Additionally, if you click on the little arrow next to the mic button a new menu will appear. From there, you will be able to instantly switch between different audio input and output devices that are installed on your computer. You will also be able to directly go to the audio settings menu from here.
How to Share Zoom Meeting Link
If you are hosting a meeting, you have to share the meeting link with other participants if they want to join. This can be easily done with the meeting link. Now, to get the meeting link, while the ‘Zoom Meeting’ window is open press ALT+i on your keyboard or click on the 3 dots next to the ‘Apps’ button, and then select ‘Invite’.
Now, click on the ‘Copy Invite Link’ button.
The Link will be copied to the clipboard and now you can share it with the participants or people you want to join your meeting. They can click on the meeting link and directly join your meeting.
Schedule a Meeting on Zoom
With Zoom, you can schedule a future meeting very easily. To do that, first, open up Zoom by searching for it in the Start Menu search and selecting it from the search results. After that, click on the ‘Schedule’ button below the ‘New Meeting’ button.
Now, a window will appear called ‘Schedule meeting’ and from here, you can change various properties of the meeting and also set parameters like the date, time, duration, etc.
To start, you can use the text box below ‘Topic’ to inform the participants what will be the subject or purpose of the meeting. Then are two dropdown boxes next to ‘Start:’. Use those to choose the date of the meeting and the starting time of the meeting respectively. Lastly use the two dropdown menus next to ‘Duration:’ to set the length of the meeting.
There are also select if it will be a Recurring meeting by ticking the box before it. In that case, you have to mention the date and time in the calendar invitation. There is also the option to select your time zone.
There are even more options and settings for you to tweak. You can choose to generate a Meeting ID or use your Personal Meeting ID. It is generally suggested to just generate a Meeting ID instead of using your Personal Meeting ID.
In the Security section, you can assign a password that every participant must enter in order to access the meeting. There is also the option to enable a waiting room where the participants will be placed after they joined the meeting. You can also set permissions to enable video for the host and the participants and if which calendar service you want to use.
Lastly, if you click on ‘Advanced options’, you will get even more options like muting participants who just joined or if you want to record the meeting and save it on your computer. After you are done setting the parameters for your future meetings to your liking, click on ‘Save’.
After you click on save, a smaller window will appear. From here, you can either invite people by copying the link and providing it directly to the participants or through a calendar invitation.
Join a Zoom Meeting
To join a Zoom meeting, you will either need a direct join link or you will need the meeting ID and the password. If you have the link to a meeting, click on the link, and your browser window will open.
On your browser window, you will receive a pop-up asking you to open the Zoom Meetings application to join meetings.
Alternatively, you can use the Meeting ID and Passcode to join the meeting.
To do that, while the Zoom application is open, click on the ‘Join’ button next to the ‘New Meeting’ button.
Now, a small window will appear. There will be two text boxes. Enter the Meeting ID in the first text box and then in the second Text box, put your username. You can also check the box before ‘Don’t connect to audio’ or ‘Turn off my video’ if you want those settings to be enabled.
After that, you have to enter the Meeting Passcode inside the text box and click on ‘Join Meeting’.
Regardless of how you join the meeting, the first window that will appear is the ‘Video Preview’ window. Here you will have the option to join the meeting with your camera-enabled or disabled. Select the option as you prefer.
After that, another window will appear before you join the meeting called ‘Join Audio’. From here, just click on ‘Join with Computer Audio’ and you will enter the meeting.
Share your Screen on Zoom
If you have a presentation or a project that you want to feature at a meeting you can use the ‘Share Screen feature’. To do that, first, click on the ‘Share Screen’ button on the Zoom app home page.
After that, the process is similar to joining a meeting. First, you have to enter the Sharing Key or the Meeting ID inside the text box and then click on ‘Share screen’.
After that, you have to enter the Meeting Passcode inside the textbox and then click on ‘Join Meeting’.
After you click on ‘Join Meeting’ you have to select a window to share. From the Basic tab, you can either share any currently opened window on your computer, you can share a Whiteboard or you can share the screen of your iPhone or iPad.
If you switch to the ‘Advanced’ tab and you will have the option to share a part of your screen or any content from a secondary camera.
Lastly, if you switch to the ‘Files’ tab, you will be able to share content from various cloud services like Dropbox or Google Drive. This is how you can share your screen on Zoom.
How to Install Apps on Zoom
Zoom allows you to install apps as addons to improve your experience on Zoom. To install an application, first, switch over to the ‘Apps’ tab and you will be presented with the ‘My Apps’ section. All your installed apps will be listed here.
To add apps, click on ‘Discover’ and you will be presented with a list of applications that you can add to Zoom.
Now, click on the ‘Add’ button.
After you click on ‘Add’ you will be redirected to a newly opened browser window. There, it will show you all the information that this app can access. Now, check the box that says ‘Allow this app to use…’ and then click on ‘Authorize’.
Now, you will receive a pop-up on your browser window asking you to open the Zoom Meetings client. Click on ‘Open Zoom Meetings’.
After you launch Zoom you will see that the app has been successfully added to the Zoom Meetings application and.
If you want to close any active application, click ‘My Apps’.
It will take you to the ‘My Apps’ tab. Here you can see all the opened applications under the ‘Opened’ section. Simply click on ‘Close All’ and the applications will be terminated.
If you want to remove any application, click on ‘Manage’ next to the app under the ‘My Apps’ section and you will be taken to the ‘App Marketplace’ page.
There you will see some information about the app and options to update or uninstall the application. Click on the ‘Uninstall’ button to remove the application from Zoom.
Now, inside the browser window, another window will appear called ‘Uninstall app’. Here you have to select the reason why you want to uninstall the application and then click on ‘Uninstall’ and the app will be removed.
As mentioned before, if you want, instead of uninstalling, you can use these steps to update any application. Simply click on ‘update’ below Authorized.
Now that you know how to install and manage apps on Zoom, here is a short list of some very useful applications that will definitely improve your experience on Zoom:
- Google Workspace: This app lets you schedule, join and manage Zoom meetings via Gmail and Google calendar.
- Google Drive for Zoom: With this app, you can easily save and transfer your meeting recordings to Google Drive.
- Slack: If you install this app, you will be able to create a Zoom meeting or call from any Slack channel or group with just one slash command, “/zoom’.
- Coursera: This app is perfect for teachers and learners. It helps to integrate the Coursera learning experience within zoom meetings to enhance the learning experience.
- Evernote: Enables you to access and edit your Evernote content from Zoom.
- Zapier: With this app, you can automate various tasks in Zoom like scheduling meetings or sending meeting invites.
- DocuSign: This addon lets you connect your DocuSign account to Zoom and use bots to digitally sign documents.
Some Useful Zoom Shortcuts
Navigating through menus is fine but knowing useful keyboard shortcuts will drastically increase your productivity on Zoom. Here is a list of some useful shortcuts that you can learn and use.
|ALT+m||Mute everyone except the host|
|ALT+Shift+s||Start/Stop screen share while hosting|
|ALT+t||Pause/Resume screen share|
|ALT+F4||Close current window|
|F6||Navigate between open windows on Zoom|