Like many of us now working from home, being able to meet online with colleagues and friends to discuss projects, update on current events, or just hang out and chat is becoming a need.
One of the most popular services to do this is Zoom since you can have a multitude of people in a single call, and it has a very usable level that is completely free.
In this article, we show you how to launch Zoom on your Mac and try some of the functions it offers.
Install the Zoom application on your Mac
Before you start using Zoom, you will have to register for a free account and download the application for MacOS. It is not currently available on the App Store, so you will have to visit www.zoom.us, and clicking the ‘Sign up’ button is free in the upper right corner of the screen.
Fill in the details, including your date of birth and your work email address, and then click the sign up button. This will send a confirmation message to your email address, so once it arrives, click on the ‘Register’ button and you will return to the Zoom site where you can enter your details once more to complete your account setup.
Before you can start making or joining meetings, you will have to install the desktop application. You can do this by clicking on the ‘Resources’ tab in the upper right corner of your account page and selecting ‘Download Zoom’ or by going directly to the Zoom client download page.
When it finishes downloading, it will leave you a zoom.pkg file in your download folder. Double click on it and follow the instructions to install the software.
If your security settings prevent you from installing the Zoom application, this does not mean that nothing is wrong, but rather that Zoom is not available in the App Store.
Once you have installed the application, launch it and you will be presented with the main screen. That’s it: you’re ready to start talking.
How to use Zoom on Mac
The main screen of the Zoom Home is made up of four large buttons and a calendar showing the next scheduled meetings. The buttons are: ‘New meeting’, ‘Join’, ‘Schedule’ and ‘Share screen’. They are self-explanatory, but we explain how to use them.
As the name suggests, this is where a new call would start. You will notice that this button has a down arrow after it, indicating that there is a drop down menu with additional options. If you click on the arrow, you will have two options: ‘Start with the video’ and ‘Use my personal meeting ID (PMI)’ with the number shown below.
Start with video is usually activated by default, since Zoom is mainly a platform for video calls, but if you prefer to control when and if you share the video with others, you can uncheck the box. Of course, there are easily accessible controls within Zoom that allow you to turn video on and off during a call.
Using my personal meeting ID (PMI) is a bit different, as it uses your personal meeting room, something Zoom says is best reserved for instant meetings with people you chat with regularly. . It’s perfect for a quick call with colleagues, as they can join the meeting at any time by simply entering their personal meeting ID.
Clicking on the ‘New Meeting’ button creates a new call. Chances are, you’ll be asked for permission for Zoom to use your computer’s camera and audio, so if you accept this, you’re ready to start your first call.
On the screen you will see yourself, as your camera sees it, and when you move the mouse a series of options will be revealed at the bottom of the screen. From the left are the following:
Mute – turn off the microphone.
Stop video: Turn off the camera.
Security: allows you to lock the meeting so that other people cannot join, use the waiting room (so that each new attendee has to be approved by you), in addition to various functions that attendees can use in the meeting.
Participants: Allows you to invite people to the meeting, mute certain attendees, or mute everyone.
Share screen: Activate the presentation mode so that all participants can see what is currently displayed on your screen.
Record: Make an MP4 video of the call.
Reactions: Emojis can be used in the call.
How do I invite people to a Zoom meeting?
With the call running after clicking the ‘New Meeting’ button, you will want to add more people to be able to actually speak.
To do this, click on the ‘Participants’ tab and a side window will open on the right. At the bottom you will see the Invite button, so click on it and you will see a new box where you can write the name of your contacts (if you have entered any in the Contacts section of your Zoom account, which you can find by selecting the Contacts tab at the top of the Zoom home screen page) or there is another tab to send email invitations.
Choose the one you consider most appropriate and wait for the guests to respond.
If you have activated the waiting room settings (you will find it by clicking the ‘More’ button to the right of the invitation button or the security tab under the main panel), It will notify you when each guest logs in and you will be asked to allow them to join the meeting. Once this is done, you will see that they appear on the main screen next to your own video source.
At the top right of the screen you will see the ‘Gallery’ mode or the ‘Speaker’ mode. If you click on the latter, you can switch between the two. Gallery mode creates dashboards so you can see everyone on the call, while Speaker mode will make anyone talking see the main video.
How do I share my screen in the Zoom?
If you want to share a graphic, an image or any other type of media with everyone, click on the ‘Share screen’ tab. A menu will open where you can choose from a number of options, including your Mac screen, which can be useful if you want to take people to a demo of a website or how to do something on your computer, a whiteboard. virtual that you can draw in real time, an iPad or an iPhone that can be connected via cable or AirPlay, or any specific open application that you currently have on your Mac.
Just highlight the one you want to use and then click the ‘Share’ button in the lower right corner.
Now all the participants will see the content of your screen, just as you see it. When you’re done, click the ‘Stop Sharing’ button at the top of the page and you’ll return to normal meeting mode.
How can I share documents in Zoom?
If you want to share documents with everyone, you will have to use the ‘Share screen again’ button, but this time when the menu appears, click on the ‘Files’ tab at the top. Now you can use Google Drive, Box or OneDrive to share your file with the participants.
How can I change my background in the Zoom?
You may have seen people on Zoom calls who have blurred the background or added more exotic places through wallpaper images. This is actually pretty easy to do.
Go to the menu bar at the top of the screen and select ‘Zoom.us> Preferences> Virtual Wallpaper’. Now you can choose one of the images that Zoom provides for free or click on the ‘+’ button and add your own.
The first time you do this, Zoom will ask you to download the Smart Virtual Background Pack, so click ‘Download’ and in a few seconds your new virtual background will appear behind you. If you want to go back to normal, go back to the settings and select the ‘None’ option.
How can I participate in a Zoom meeting?
Once you’ve received an email invitation, just click on the link and the Mac app will launch automatically. The other option is to open the application, click Join, and then enter the meeting ID or the name of the personal link provided to you.
How can I schedule a Zoom meeting?
Scheduling a meeting on the Zoom is similar to reserving a conference room in the office, since later you will have to invite people.
Open the Zoom application and click on the ‘Schedule’ button. This opens a new menu where you can enter the meeting topic, the date and time it will be held, the password to join, the type of calendar application that will be used to create the appointment, in addition to some other settings Basic for the type of devices that can be connected and if you use your personal identification or make Zoom generate a disposable.
When you have configured things the way you want, click the ‘Schedule’ button.
You will see the meeting that now appears in the calendar on the main page of the Zoom application, along with the meeting identification number. Next to the meeting heading you will see three dots in a box. Click on it and select the ‘Copy invitation’ option.
The last step is to create a group email that includes everyone you want to attend the meeting, and then paste the copied invitation into the text box. Send the email and everything should be ready for your future meeting.
There you have it, a guide to the basics of using the Zoom. Of course, there are other services available as well, so be sure to read the best video conferencing apps on Mac to see if they best suit your particular needs.