New wallpapers for Google Meet: how to activate them

After having given the possibility to choose a wallpaper on Google Meet for PC, the same one arrives on the Android app: how to manage the novelty

The Covid-19 pandemic has made the whole world rediscover the importance of those platforms that manage to put people in touch, even if they are very far away, just through a simple internet connection. Whether you have a fiber or mobile network connection, a smartphone and a service like Google Meet are enough to forget distances and restrictions.

So, first during the lockdown and then due to the restrictions of various kinds to stem the spread of the virus, Google Meet, Microsoft Teams, Zoom, FaceTime and all similar services have experienced a surge in terms of registered users and generated traffic. As a result, it's not surprising that Google, Microsoft, Apple, and the other development teams have been working hard to improve the platforms as quickly as possible to provide the best service at a time when schools, businesses, and people need it most. Developments continue unabated, and the latest comes from Google, which has introduced the ability to blur the background on Meet or set a custom one on Android.

The new Google Meet backgrounds

To some, today's news sounds familiar, and indeed it is partly so. The ability to change the background of Google Meet has existed for almost a year in the desktop environment, but until now it was excluded from the Android and iOS applications.

And if for the Apple operating system there are no new features on the horizon, the time has come for the debut on Android for the ability to blur the background or set a custom one.

It's not always possible to have a neutral background, such as a white wall, to attend an important business meeting, and in this case the ability to blur the background to hide what's behind it can be useful regardless of the medium used, whether you participate through a webcam or with the front camera of your smartphone.

The possibility of setting a personalized background can be useful instead in conversations between friends, for example pretending to be in the Bahamas when in reality you are in another place, perhaps less exotic. In short, being able to set a neutral background or a custom one greatly increases the freedom to converse on video, both in formal contexts and in friendly or goliardic ones, why not.

How to activate the new Meet backgrounds on Android

First of all, it should be noted that Google Meet does not (yet) allow you to set a totally customized background, that is, one taken from the smartphone memory. This possibility will come, Google warned, but it's not yet time.

The choice can be between a blurred background or "one of the images selected by Google", including office spaces, landscapes and abstract patterns. To choose the background on Google Meet for Android, just tap the new button that appears in the "green room" pre conversation, and then scroll through the various options offered by the carousel.

The rollout of the news, as often happens in these cases, is gradual, so it may take a few days, if not a couple of weeks, before it reaches everyone.