In today’s unprecedented times, video-calling apps are helping most of us bridge the distance. Now, Facebook has also introduced Messenger Rooms to make it easy for users to spend quality time with friends, loved ones and people who share your interests. Let’s check out how Facebook Messenger Rooms are different from already popular video-conferencing app Zoom.
How much is the cost and time limit
Interestingly, Facebook Messenger Room can be accessed free of cost for unlimited time as against Zoom, where price variates from free-tier to the paid version. The Basic version for Zoom Personal Meeting comes free of cost with a limited time of 40 minutes only. The Pro version of Zoom, which seems to be great for small teams, comes for monthly charge of $14.99 with a time limit of 24 hours. The Business version of Zoom Meetings, which can be used by small-and-medium size of businesses, is available for monthly charge of $19.99. Lastly, the Enterprise version of Zoom, which is perfect for large enterprises, comes with a price tag of $19.99 per month.
How participants can be added
While a user can create a room right from Messenger or Facebook, and invite anyone to join the video call, even if they don’t have a Facebook account. The social-networking giant claims that Rooms will soon hold up to 50 people with no time limit. On the contrary, Zoom’s basic personal meeting plan can hold up to 100 participants.
How to start the meeting
In order to start the Messenger Rooms video call, a user can start and share rooms on Facebook via News Feed, Groups and Events that will allow people to join in easily. According to an official blog post by Facebook, “The default privacy settings were designed to be consistent with what you’d expect for where you create a room. For example, rooms you create through a Facebook Group are open by default to members of that Group.”
Mind you! In Facebook Messenger Rooms, you can invite people who don’t even have a Facebook account to join the video call. On the other hand, before joining a Zoom meeting on a computer or mobile device, you can download the Zoom app from the Download Center. Otherwise, you will be prompted to download and install Zoom when you click a join link. The other pre-requisites is that each meeting has a unique 9, 10, or 11-digit number called a meeting ID that will be required to join a Zoom meeting. Moreover, if you are joining via telephone, you will need the teleconferencing number provided in the invite.
How to keep uninvited guests away
Facebook Messenger Rooms can be locked or unlocked once a call begins. If a room is locked, no one else can join, except a Group admin for rooms created through a Group. However, if at any point you feel unsafe in a room, you can leave. Just because a room is locked doesn’t mean you have to stay.
Now looking at Zoom, when you’re in the meeting, click Participants at the bottom of your Zoom window. In the participant’s pop-up box, you will see a button that says Lock Meeting. When you lock the meeting, no new participants can join, even if they have the meeting ID and password.
How can you reporting a violation
As far as Facebook Messengers Rooms are concerned, you can report a room name or submit feedback about a room if you believe it violated our Community Standards. According to Erin Egan, Chief Privacy Officer, Policy at Facebook Messenger, said, “But since we don’t watch or listen to your audio or video calls, it’s important to know that reports and feedback will not include audio or video from the room.”
Now moving on to Zoom, account owners and admins can now enable a setting to allow the host to report participants to Zoom. According to latest release notes by Zoom, “This feature will generate a report which will be sent to the Zoom Trust and Safety team to evaluate any misuse of the platform and block a user if necessary. This setting is available at the account, group, and user level and can be locked at the group or account level.” It is believed that this feature will help the video-conferencing app to counter “Zoombombing.”
How to block someone
You can block someone on Facebook or Messenger who may be bothering you and we won’t inform them. When someone you’ve blocked is logged into Facebook or Messenger, they won’t be able to join a room you’re in and you won’t be able to join theirs.
As the Zoom account owner or admin, you can manage blocked numbers on your account. Blocked numbers can be inbound (numbers will be blocked from calling in) and outbound (phone users in your account won’t be able to dial those numbers). Mind you! Blocked calls will still appear in the admin call log and associated phone user’s call history. Moreover, blocked callers will hear a generic message stating that the person they are trying to reach is not available. If a phone user calls a blocked outbound phone number, they will hear the same generic message stating that the person they are trying to reach is not available.
Besides this, you can even remove unwanted or disruptive participants on Zoom without blocking by heading to the Participants menu. Now, you can mouse over a participant’s name, and several options will appear, including Remove. Click that to kick someone out of the meeting.
How information and activity privacy is managed
Regardless of whether you use Rooms through your Facebook account or join as a guest, an official blog post by the social-networking giant claimed that “we don’t watch or listen to your audio or video calls. When you join a room through Facebook or Messenger, call participants who you aren’t friends with on Facebook will be able to see and hear whatever you say or share in the room, but they won’t gain any greater access to your profile or information in other parts of Facebook. They’ll only be able to see information that they otherwise would have been able to see such as your name and public Facebook profile information, what you’ve posted publicly or content in a group you’ve both joined.” And if you are not logged in to Facebook, only as user has to reveal his/her name as it will be shown to help other guests and the room creator identify you in a call.
On the other hand, Zoom claims, “We do not sell your personal data. Whether you are a business or a school or an individual user, we do not sell your data. Your meetings are yours. We do not monitor them or even store them after your meeting is done unless we are requested to record and store them by the meeting host. We alert participants via both audio and video when they join meetings if the host is recording a meeting, and participants have the option to leave the meeting.”
Moreover, when the meeting is recorded, it is, at the host’s choice, stored either locally on the host’s machine or in our Zoom cloud. As per Aparna Bawa, Zoom’s Chief Legal Officer, the video conferencing app “collects only the user data that is required to provide you Zoom services. This includes technical and operational support and service improvement. For example, we collect information such as a user’s IP address and OS and device details to deliver the best possible Zoom experience to you regardless of how and from where you join.”
For the latest gadget and tech news, and gadget reviews, follow us on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram. For newest tech & gadget videos subscribe to our YouTube Channel. You can also stay up to date using the Gadget Bridge Android App.