Compared to some other video chat apps, Google Meet is…well, kind of dull. Sure, you can change the background or blur it, but up until now, that was about it when it comes to personalization.
This changes today. Google has integrated a bunch of new filters and masks into Meet, making it a bit more like Google Duo (which Meet is replacing anyways) and very much like the Snap Camera app on Zoom. These include new, animated backgrounds such as an undersea environment with bubbles and jellyfish swimming around (additions to the three launched in April), as well as changing your head into the head of a cat, elephant, dinosaur, and more.
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To access these new options, join or start a Meet call on Android or iOS, then tap the sparkle icon in the bottom right. Under the old options for background effects, you’ll see an additional row on options such as Blur, Backgrounds, Styles, and Filters.
Google Workspace is now free for everyone
The new features should be live now for Android and iOS users, both in the Meet app and even in Gmail. However, there are some limitations — you can’t get them in the web experience, and it only works for personal accounts, not managed accounts, such as those owned businesses and universities. Yes, that means you won’t be able to surprise your colleagues by having a dinosaur head at the meeting today, sorry.
Just be sure to always check your settings before you join a video call. This did not turn out well for a lawyer in Texas.