Has work moved from in person to online? Can’t figure out how to get Zoom working on your device of choice? Trying to find a way to connect with your parents even though they haven’t touched a computer since the 80s, if that?
Here are step by step directions how to get Zoom working on your computer or smartphone.
How Do You Use Zoom? A Step-By-Step Guide (With Pictures)
Step One: Make sure your device has a camera and microphone!
Before you download Zoom, double check that your computer or smartphone has a camera. Maybe this isn’t an issue for a younger generation, but if you’re helping your parents or grandparents get this app, they may not realize this is something to check for.
Modern laptop? Any smartphone? You’re good to go! But if your parents haven’t updated their computer since 2000, maybe stick with that iPad or Android you got them for Christmas.
(If you’re not sure, look at the top of your computer or phone screen. If there’s a little circular lens, that’s a camera.)
Step two: Download Zoom on Your Device
Now it’s time to download the app itself.
Go to Zoom.us. Don’t worry about signing up, or signing in, or any of that complicated stuff. If you just want to join a meeting, all you need is the app. There is a gray bar at the top of the screen, with a dropdown that says resources. If you hover over it, a menu will drop down. The top option is going to say Download Zoom Client.
Click on that option. It will take you to a new page. You will have several options, but click the download button for the Zoom Client for Meetings, the first one.
Once you click that blue button, another button will appear at the bottom of the screen. It may take a minute for that button to be ready. Once the bar stops circling, the blue Zoom Icon(it looks like a video camera) will appear. Click on that button.
Good news! The app is now on your computer. It looks like this. (If you’re on a modern computer, it will appear at the bottom of the page.
Now click on that button, and you’ll see a popup:
Find the Apple App Store on your phone. This is where you get any new application. Open the App store by clicking on it. On the bottom right, you will see a magnifying glass with the word “search” below it.
A new page will appear. Click on the gray bar that will appear and type in the word Zoom.
Once you do, several suggestions will appear. Click the one that just says Zoom. And then look for the blue camera icon. It will be labeled ZOOM Cloud Meetings. Click a gray button with blue text that says GET.
You will have to sign in to your Apple account, which you made to activate your Apple product, in order to download the app. Once you do, the app will download. You’ll see a loading circle where the word GET used to be. Wait until that circle becomes the word OPEN. Then you can press it. Once you press open, Zoom should open. As soon as you see this screen, you are ready for Step 3.
Step 3: Join a Meeting
Now that the Zoom app is on your device of choice, you can he join a meeting. The meeting host will send you either a URL to click on or a Meeting ID.
If you are signing in with a Meeting ID, click the “Join a Meeting,” button and type in the ID that you received, along with the name that you want to appear as.
If you have a link, either by email or text, just click the link. It should look the same, but you no longer need to type in the ID. Just put the name you want to appear by your video and hit join.
When you first join a Zoom call, you will see a popup asking how you want them to hear you talk. You’re going to want to select “Join with Computer Audio.”
Once that’s done, your audio and video should be on. If not, check the menu bar at the bottom of your screen by moving your cursor over your screen. If there is a red line through “start video,” click on it. Or if you’d prefer that others do not see you, you can also click on is to get the red line back. Then you will be able to see others but they won’t be able to see you. The mute button works the same way. If you turn it on, others won’t be able to hear you. This is good for barking dogs.
As soon as you click open a meeting, several popups are going to appear. First Zoom will ask for access to your microphone. Click “OK”
Next it will ask you if you’d like to receive Notifications. This one isn’t actually necessary, but if you decide to allow it, you will be notified if someone is using Zoom to message you.
Now it will ask you to join the audio. This will happen every time you join a Zoom Call. “Call Using Internet Audio” is the fastest and easiest option, so I recommend clicking that option.
You will get one more popup asking about your video settings. Zoom will ask for access to your camera. Make sure you hit “OK.”
Click the screen once and the options will appear at the bottom of your screen. If you want people to see you, make sure the video camera is white. If you want them to hear you, make sure the microphone is white. To change these options, click on those buttons again to turn off either your microphone or video.
Now on to meetings, coffee breaks, and get togethers. Happy connecting.