Google Meet adding second screen ‘Companion Mode’ experience

Google has been rapidly iterating on Meet in the past year, and that’s continuing today alongside updates to Gmail and Workspace. Google Meet is getting a “Companion Mode” to provide a second-screen experience as part of a push to make hybrid meetings more equitable.

Companion Mode is designed to seamlessly connect those in the room with their remote teammates, giving everyone advanced features to participate, while leveraging the best of in-room audio and video conferencing capabilities.

On the web, you’ll be able to present, send messages to video call participants, take part in Q&A or polls, and raise your hand. Some second screen experiences will also be available on the Nest Hub Max.

Colleagues who are in the same meeting room together will enable Companion Mode on their personal devices, giving them their own video tile in Meet and helping them to stay connected with their remote teammates.
Google Meet’s Companion Mode will be available on the web in September and is coming soon to mobile.

Another improvement to the Meet experience will let you specify on an RSVP whether you’re joining a call virtually or in person.

On the safety front, admins will be better able to set policies for who can join meetings. A new moderation control will allow hosts to disable in-meeting chat and presenting during meetings, as well as full control over mute and unmute.

It is still bad on the phone: when you maximize someone else’s presentation, your own camera covers the upper right part of the presentation as a PiP. I don’t know what they were thinking. Besides, your can’t fix your own camera nor there is a button shortcut in other people’s images to fix them, as there was before. I realize Meet is better on a desktop or larger screen, but often we need to use a phone for meetings, so these regressions hurt.