Google on Wednesday announced that its video conferencing app, Google Meet will now support a grid view of up to 16 participants at once to help employees working from home or students taking part in remote education amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
Previously, the grid view feature in the Web was limited only to four people on-screen at a time, which has now been extended up to 16 participants.
Google Meet will now adjust the tile layout option to show active speakers. If you are in a meeting with more than 16 other people, there is an option to open the list of participants and see who else is in the meeting that’s not in the grid view.
“Seeing more people at the same time can help improve the dynamics of larger group meetings and classes. Whether it’s seeing everyone’s reactions to what’s being discussed, or more easily tracking multiple speakers, it can help remote meetings feel more like in-person meetings and encourage participation. We hope that this helps individuals and teams feel more connected while apart,” Google wrote in the blog post.
Currently, the 16-head view feature is only available for Google Meet on the Web but updates for larger meetings, better presentation layouts, and support across more devices will be coming soon. To use the tiled layout in a meeting, you can follow the instructions in the Help Center.
The full rollout of the 16-head view feature has already started on April 20, 2020, and is expected to be completed by April 24, 2020. Further, the gradual rollout of the feature will start on April 27, 2020, and is expected to be completed by May 1, 2020.
Recently, Microsoft Teams also rolled out a major update that shows nine participants on the screen at a time during the video calls.