How to use Zoom on the Echo Show

Zoom meetings are part of everyday life for many of us. Whether you’re a college student learning remotely or an executive with back-to-back meetings, or if it’s just that your book club is still meeting virtually, most of us have to struggle with the video conferencing society at some point in time. our week. Having another option for joining meetings other than your computer or squinting at your smartphone is a nice bonus, and if you have an Echo Show at home it can make a useful hands-free Zoom machine.

Video calling with Zoom is currently available on the Echo Show 8 (first and second generation) and Echo Show 10 (the one that spins). Amazon said Zoom will be coming to Echo Show 15 later this year.

Both the Show 10 and the second-gen 8 deploy digital pan and zoom with their built-in cameras to ensure that the camera focuses on you even if you’re moving around. With the 10, the screen can also rotate 360 ​​degrees to follow you around the room (useful if you like cooking dinner while zooming).

To use Zoom video calls on an Echo Show, you will need, in addition to an Echo Show 8 or Echo Show 10, a free Amazon Alexa account and the Alexa app on your smartphone. The Echo Show must be signed into the same Alexa account as your Alexa app.

The setup is really simple. You don’t need to download a Zoom app or activate a Zoom Alexa skill — you don’t even need a Zoom account. However, I recommend logging into Zoom on the Show if you have an account, as it gives you more options in meetings and makes it even easier to join. We’ll come back to that in a moment.

It’s worth noting that you can also join Zoom meetings on screenless Echo speakers, such as the Echo and Echo Dot, but the experience will be audio-only and you must link your calendar in the Alexa app to use Zoom ( we detail how to do this below).

Familiar zoom controls appear on the Echo Show screen when you’re in a meeting.

  • Say “Alexa, join my Zoom meeting”.
  • Alexa will ask for your Zoom meeting ID – you can say it out loud or type it on screen. (You can connect a keyboard via Bluetooth to facilitate this.)
  • Then it will ask for a password (again, you can say it out loud or type it on screen) and the meeting will begin.
  • While in a meeting, a toolbar that displays mute/unmute, start/stop video, and end buttons will be visible when you join. It will disappear once the call starts, but you can retrieve it by tapping the screen.
  • You can also use the physical mute button, camera cover, and volume buttons on the Show during a meeting.
  • To end a meeting, press the End button or say “Alexa, end meeting”.

If you connect your calendar to your Alexa account, you can skip manual entry of meeting ID and password and go straight to your next meeting by simply saying “Alexa, join my meeting” or “Alexa, start my next meeting” (Alexa will start by confirming which meeting). Alexa can also announce when your next Zoom meeting is about to start. You need to link your calendar if you want to use Zoom on Echo speakers without a screen.

Here’s how to connect your calendar to Alexa. (Pro Tip: If you have multiple Zoom users in one household, set up Alexa visual identifier Where Alexa voice tag so Alexa knows which Zoom meeting to start.)

  • In the Alexa app on your phone, go to More > Settings > Calendar.
  • Tap “Add Account” to choose your calendar provider. Google, Microsoft and Apple calendars are supported, as well as Alexa’s own calendar. (If you use multiple calendars, be sure to choose the one where your Zoom invites are live.)
  • Follow the steps to connect your calendar.
  • Repeat for each calendar you want to link.
  • Alexa can now start your meetings without you entering any details, and upcoming meetings can be shown on the show screen and announced on any Echo speakers you designate in the Alexa app. You can also join just by tapping the on-screen notification.

Viewing participants in a Zoom video call on Echo Show is similar to viewing them on a computer.

If you have a Zoom account, signing into it on Echo Show adds more functionality for creating and hosting meetings, but it’s not necessary to use Zoom on an Echo Show.

  • Say “Alexa, open Zoom,” then press the Zoom connect button.
  • A code will appear directing you to go to on your phone or computer, or you can enter your email and password directly on the View screen (you only need to do this once per device)
  • Add a PIN to unlock Zoom (useful if you don’t want everyone in your household jumping into your Zoom account).

Photos by Jennifer Pattison Tuohy/The Verge

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