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Zoom vs. Google Meet - Knowledgebase / Phones & Conferencing / Zoom Web Conferencing / Overview for Zoom at Brown - OIT Service Center

Zoom vs. Google Meet

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Zoom and Google Meet: what's the difference?

Google Meet is now available in Brown’s Google environment. You can use Google Meet to start a meeting from your email or embed Google Meet info in a calendar invitation. We recognize that having the options of both Google Meet and Zoom may be confusing. 

Compare the features of Zoom ( and Google Meet ( to help decide which tool is best for your needs.  Google Meet offers a simple interface for informal online meetings, while Zoom offers additional features and collaborative tools. 

We suggest that you continue to use Zoom for:

  • Professional meetings and interviews
  • Large meetings
  • Teaching and learning
  • Events

Google Meet works well for:

  • Smaller, informal meetings
  • One-on-one meetings

Screen sharing


  • Simultaneous screen sharing (the meeting host can allow multiple people to share the screen at the same time).
  • Annotation of screen sharing

Google Meet

  •  Only one person may share their screen at a time.

Maximum number of meeting participants


  • Up to 300 people in Zoom meetings

Google Meet

  • Up to 250 people until September, 30, 2020. Google raised the meeting participant number based on the needs of the education community this semester. Google may change the participant number after September 30.

Who can host?


  • All Brown faculty, staff, and students can host Zoom meetings.

Google Meet

  • Brown faculty, staff, and students with Brown email accounts can host Google Meets.

Who can attend?


  • If invited, anyone can attend meetings and webinars, including individuals outside of the University.

Google Meet

  • If invited, anyone can attend meetings, including individuals outside of the University. Users in China may have difficulty joining. When it seems like there’s even a small chance that a meeting invitee may be unable to join, opt for Zoom. 

 Additional Features


Initiate virtual breakout sessions:

  • Meeting participants can be placed in breakout rooms to hold small-group discussions.
  • See Zoom: Breakout Rooms.

Set up a meeting poll:

Chat with all meeting participants or chat with a specific individual:

Share a whiteboard for group annotation

Spotlight a speaker

Pin a speaker

  • Set your view to one specific speaker. This does not affect other participants.
  • See Zoom: Pin Video

Google Meet

  • In-meeting chat with all meeting participants
  • Spotlight a speaker
    • Set a primary active speaker for all participants
  • Pin a speaker 
    • Set your view to one specific speaker. This does not affect other participants.

Learn More:

Get help:

  • Contact the IT Service Center if you need help or advice about Zoom or Google Meet. or
  • For help using Zoom for Teaching and Learning, contact
  • For help using Zoom for events, contact

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