Hybrid work just got better with Google Meet’s new Companion Mode.
What you need to know
- Google launches Companion Mode for Google Meet.
- Companion Mode allows meeting participants to use devices as second screens to interact with the meeting.
- The new functionality is compatible with Google Meet hardware and the Nest Hub Max.
After announcing Companion Mode for Google Meet in September last year, Google is finally rolling out the new feature for Workspace accounts on devices like the Nest Hub Max.
Companion Mode is a neat feature that Google launched as a way to address the new hybrid work that many of us have gotten used to. It does this by allowing users to attend Google Meet meetings using secondary devices without any of the confusion or audio issues that might come about.
For example, if you’re in a conference room on a meeting, you can use your Meet hardware to join in using Companion Mode. This will utilize the audio and video from the conference room while allowing you to still participate in chats, polls, and other functions on your personal device.
Users can join a meeting in Companion Mode by visiting g.co/companion or g.co/present on compatible hardware, the latter of which is intended for those that want to share their screens.
Companion Mode is available on the web through Meet hardware and the Nest Hub Max. Google says these devices will receive prompts “when chat messages are sent or other interactive activities are initiated in a meeting.”
Participants that join a meeting in Companion Mode will be identified as such in the roster, and each instance will count as a separate participant. These users will also be hidden from the meeting tiles unless they raise their hand “to maximize screen space for video feeds.”
Google says Companion Mode will roll out gradually starting January 13, while activity notifications on Meet hardware and Google’s best smart display will start showing up from February 2.
Nest Hub Max
$190 at Best Buy
$189 at Google
Home and work all-in-one
The Nest Hub Max is Google’s best smart display thanks to its large display, great speakers, and front-facing camera. This makes it the ideal device for both smart home control and hybrid work meetings.