Zoom is adding a new feature inspired by Microsoft Teams

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Zoom has started to push out an update that adds a new feature called Immersive View to your meetings. This ensures your next digital meeting feels a bit more like you’re back in the office in-person, putting up to 25 meeting participants into a single virtual background. Zoom said the new feature will help users “connect and collaborate in a cohesive virtual meeting space”.

If all that sounds pretty familiar, then that’s because the Immersive View is (very) similar to Microsoft Teams’ Together Mode. This Microsoft Teams feature was launched last July and places meeting participants in a virtual space such as an auditorium, meeting room or coffee bar.

Microsoft said this virtual shared space helps to create “a feeling of togetherness that’s really compelling.” And this professional-looking environment was positioned as an antidote to the fatigue some people may feel having to work from home and broadcast meetings from their bedrooms, living rooms or kitchen table – which don’t always provide the most idea-inspiring backdrop.

Microsoft teams collaboration app detailed by tech giant

Zoom’s own take on this was announced at Zoomtopia 2020, and is rolling out to Windows 10 and macOS right now. Like Teams’s Together Mode, Zoom’s Immersive View offers a number of different backdrops for a virtual meeting – such as a meeting room or a table by the office kitchen.

If none of the backdrops on offer meet your needs then you can add in a custom background of your own choosing.

Outlining the new feature in a blog post, Zoom said: “Immersive View allows hosts to arrange video participants and webinar panelists into a single virtual background, bringing people together into one scene to connect and collaborate in a cohesive virtual meeting space.

“Whether you want to create the feeling of being in a classroom, a boardroom, a conference auditorium, or your favourite place to catch up with friends, Zoom’s Immersive View assembles up to 25 participants in one fun, consistent meeting environment.”

The Zoom Immersive View feature is available with version 5.6.3 or higher for Windows and macOS. The feature is available for all free and single Pro accounts and is enabled by default.

To use Immersive View, you will need to start a meeting or webinar as the host. Then, in the top-right corner click on View and then Immersive View.

You can then choose to automatically place participants onto a background or manually arrange the view. Then, you will need to select a meeting backdrop you’d like to use and once you’ve done that you just need to hit Start.

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