In order to help participants who may be deaf or hard of hearing follow along and stay engaged, Google Meet has now expanded live caption support to four additional languages apart was English. These languages are French, German, Portuguese (Brazil) and Spanish (Spain and Latin America).
“We know from our work with teachers and parents over the years how essential caption tools can be for students with learning disabilities, as well as English-language learners in both K-12 and higher education. Professional development experts often encourage the integration of this technology to make lessons more accessible, especially in the time of COVID-19. We’ve heard from Meet users about how helpful it can be to not only see who is speaking and view their expressions, but also read the text of what they are saying. By expanding live captions to more languages, we can help more students feel empowered to participate, and help more teachers share a space that is both accessible and inclusive. In addition, we’ve made captions settings “sticky,” so they’re even easier to use. This means that if you turn them on or off during a meeting, your preference will be saved, along with the chosen language, for future meetings,” said Phillip Nelson, Product Manager, Google Workspace.
Earlier this year, Google Meet introduced breakout rooms in Meet to help educators create dedicated spaces for more focused discussions and track student engagement with attendance reports. The tech giant continued to improve these experiences and have also made them available to more Google Workspace editions so that organizations can use group discussion formats. The latest updates to these large meeting features that help organizations increase participation and engagement during a call includes Breakout Rooms, Attendance Reports and Hand raising.
Breakout Rooms is a new countdown timer helps moderators keep everyone on task. Moderator requests call on the moderator to join a breakout room if participants need help or have a question, and dial-in participants and anonymous users can now participate in breakout rooms. Besides this, Attendance Reports feature is Viewership data that is now available for live streamed events like virtual all-hands meetings, and new advanced settings provide admins and hosts with additional controls over attendance reports. Additionally, Hand raising feature enables participants to know if they have a question or indicate that they would like to speak by raising their hand. In large meetings, this helps to increase participation while not disrupting the flow of the conversation and helps to prevent people from interrupting one another.
It was also revealed that Google Meet will continue to offer unlimited calls (up to 24 hours) in the free version through March 31, 2021 for Gmail accounts this holiday season.
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