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Google Meet vs Zoom vs Switchboard: Which is best for remote team collaboration?
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Google Meet vs Zoom vs Switchboard: Which is best for remote team collaboration?

Discover the pros and cons of Google Meet vs Zoom vs Switchboard for your virtual meetings—and which is best for remote team collaboration.

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Storytelling is a powerful, innate human tradition that brings people together and teaches us about ourselves and the world around us. But it can also be a one-sided experience. 

By contrast, role-playing games (RPGs) make storytelling more interactive by offering people the chance to work together and create a shared story, each contributing their own ideas, actions, and outcomes. Players use their imagination and dice to make the story dynamic by making decisions together.

Video conferencing can be similar to traditional storytelling—one person speaking while everyone else listens. That’s because the choice of virtual meeting platform often comes down to Google Meet vs Zoom. But while these platforms are great for talking, they fall short when it comes to working together as a team. 

Leaders of highly collaborative teams in small remote or hybrid companies should look for alternatives that act as a home base. Specifically, tools that support a collaborative way of working through features like persistent rooms that save your work. These alternatives let you move beyond one-way screen sharing, get more done during meetings, and create a more collaborative workspace where everyone can work together on any project at any time.

In this post, we’ll walk you through Google Meet, Zoom, and Switchboard and compare their features and pricing. We’ll also show you how Switchboard helps you create a collaborative space where your teams feel more connected to each other and to their work. 

Want to have engaging online meetings that go beyond screen sharing and emoji reactions?
Switchboard lets you work side-by-side with your team and collaborate in real time or async.
Sign up for free

Google Meet vs Zoom vs Switchboard: overview 

Don’t want to read in-depth descriptions? Check out the table below for a quick visual features comparison of Zoom, Google Meet, and Switchboard.

Google Meet vs Zoom vs Switchboard comparison chart

1. Google Meet

Screenshot of a Google Meet meeting
Google Meet lets your team plan and gather in real time for quick catch-ups, scheduled check-ins, and webinars. Source: Google Meet

Google Meet (previously Google Hangouts) is a good alternative to Zoom if your company’s already using Google Workspace (previously G Suite). It’s straightforward, gives you high-quality video and audio conferencing and live chat, and lets you easily connect with your team. 

You can use it for scheduled 1:1s, check-ins, and top-down team meetings. It also provides plenty of dialing options so people can call in from their mobile devices if their network connection isn’t great. Additionally, there’s a Google Meet app so your team members can join meetings on the go.

2. Zoom

Online meeting on Zoom
Zoom is useful for large teams that want a basic, reliable online meeting tool. Source: Zoom

Zoom is one of the most recognizable video conferencing platforms out there today. As one of the biggest Google Meet alternatives, it offers online meeting solutions for various industries, from education to healthcare. And although it comes with tons of bells and whistles on a paid plan, the free version keeps it simple with free 40-minute meetings and 100 participants per call.

You can use Zoom for various types of meetings, including team meetings, client calls, webinars, online training, and virtual events. However, like Google Meet, it doesn’t allow you to host very interactive calls so meetings are more like one-sided information-sharing instead of a collaborative effort.

3. Switchboard

Switchboard room with people working on multiple documents and apps
With Switchboard, meeting participants can collaborate in real time, creating a more productive remote work environment. Source: Switchboard

Switchboard is a browser-based collaboration hub that lets you and your team work on documents and apps inside a virtual room—without having to share your screen. Its intuitive meeting rooms are designed to foster team connection and productivity and give everyone on the team a role to play.

Switchboard lets you communicate in real time with video, audio, and chat. You can also work side-by-side allowing everyone to scroll, type, and browse the same document at the same time. 

You can create cloud-based virtual rooms for brainstorming, host spontaneous meetings with your team, and connect with clients in an interactive space. Throughout the meeting, you can explore any file in the room, moving around and viewing whatever you want without getting in the way of others. 

Google Meet vs Zoom vs Switchboard: engagement features 

Both Zoom and Google Meet offer a few similar features like emoji reactions, polls, and hand raising to help make meetings more interactive. But one-way screen sharing doesn’t boost engagement.

What makes Switchboard stand out, and give you more engaging meetings, is its multiplayer experience. During coworking or brainstorming sessions, or even when you’re playing games, everyone can work together instead of just listening to one person talk. Finally, every tab or app you open in Switchboard rooms will stay there so you can go back and work on them anytime—before, during, or after meetings. 

Google Meet engagement features:

  • Hand raising 
  • Polls
  • Q&A
  • Breakout rooms 
  • Emoji reactions 
  • Virtual backgrounds 
  • Live captioning 
  • Audio, video, and screen sharing 

Zoom engagement features:

  • Hand raising 
  • Polls
  • Q&A
  • Breakout rooms 
  • Emoji reactions 
  • Virtual backgrounds 
  • Live captioning only available with a Zoom live transcription license 
  • Audio, video, and screen sharing 

Switchboard engagement features:

  • In-meeting video, audio, and chat
  • Screen sharing for native apps
  • Presentation mode
  • Dedicated rooms
  • Room permissions for members and guests
  • Sections to organize documents and apps
  • Host not required for members to enter a room
Pro tip: When you use Switchboard, every app and website instantly becomes multiplayer so everyone can roll the dice and develop the game together instead of just listening to the story. Switchboard’s persistent rooms save every file or app you have open so you can go back and work on them in between collaborative sessions.
Screenshot of multiple rooms in Switchboard
Switchboard makes it easy to collaborate and use all the tools, web apps, files, and browsers your team needs. Source: Switchboard

Google Meet vs Zoom vs Switchboard: collaboration features

Google Meet and Zoom  are great for calls, but small remote or hybrid teams might find it difficult to actually get things done together using these tools. That’s because they only give you a few collaboration features like whiteboards, in-meeting chat, and screen sharing.

Switchboard, on the other hand, provides you with real-time communication through video chat and virtual spaces. And it lets you use all your usual apps together without the need to share your screen. You don't have to waste time switching from one platform to another or sharing links because everything you need is right there in one place. 

And for the cherry on top: Switchboard's persistent rooms save all the information you put in them, which means you don't have to keep gathering everything together again.

Google Meet collaboration features:

  • Whiteboard 
  • Screen sharing
  • Public in-meeting chat 
  • Meeting recordings 

Zoom collaboration features:

  • Whiteboard 
  • Screen sharing
  • Private and public in-meeting chat
  • Meeting recordings 

Switchboard collaboration features:

  • Shared online workspace and rooms for recurring meetings
  • Unlimited rooms for 1:1s, meetings, and projects
  • Web-based canvas to add multiple apps, websites, PDFs, and images side by side
  • Persistent rooms that save your work
  • Secure, fast multiplayer browsers for instant collaboration
  • Sticky notes
  • Meeting recordings
  • Accommodates every web-based whiteboard
Pro tip: When you use Switchboard, you can create a permanent, dedicated co-working room that acts as a home base so your team members can always find each other and work together in real time or async on projects and tasks. Kind of like leaving the board set up so you can come back later and continue the game.
Screenshot of Switchboard’s virtual room with multiple participants collaborating on a document.
Switchboard helps remote teams collaborate on ideas, increasing productivity and a sense of community. Source: Switchboard

Google Meet vs Zoom vs Switchboard: async working capabilities 

Zoom and Google Meet are made for real-time communication, so they don’t offer any features for async work. With Zoom, you can record meetings and refer to them later. But someone has to find the recording and send it out to colleagues so they can catch up on what was said.

And if you want to work together outside a Google Meet call, you need to use a combination of other Google Workspace tools like Google Drive, Google Docs, Google Sheets, and Gmail.

Switchboard async working features:

  • Persistent rooms that save all your documents, files, and apps 
  • Virtual whiteboards, comments, sticky notes, and permanent in-room chat
  • Meeting recording
  • Google Calendar integration

Switchboard is more than a video conferencing tool. It’s a virtual workspace that acts as a home base where your team can easily find each other and work together–or alone–whenever they want. 

You can share and open multimedia files, documents, or web browsers directly in dedicated rooms and Switchboard saves them all after every meeting. That means you never need to download anything or repopulate the room again. This way, you can prepare a room, enter it anytime, save all your docs and files, and go back afterward and continue working.   

Google Meet vs Zoom vs Switchboard: user experience 

A screenshot of Google Meet’s meeting setup
Hosting meetings on Google Meet is straightforward, but there are some extra setup steps for both you and your people. Source: Google Meet

Setting up video calls and group meetings with Google Meet and Zoom is pretty straightforward. The catch is that it puts a damper on the sort of spontaneous interactions that make remote work the same as, or better than, in-person work. 

With these platforms, meeting hosts first need to log in to their Zoom or Google account and check everyone’s availability on their calendars. If everyone’s available to meet, you need to set up the event, invite all the participants, send them a meeting link, and wait for them to join. And if you’re using any of these platforms’ free plans, you need to bear in mind the meeting time limit. You also may not be able to record the call.

But with Switchboard, your meeting and collaboration rooms are already ready and waiting for you every time. All you need to do is jump in and start working together. And if a team member isn’t available, not only will they have the meeting recording to look back on, but everything you and the others worked on will still be there in the room, including any comments, sticky notes, or brainstorming mind maps. 

Google Meet vs Zoom vs Switchboard: pricing 

Google Meet pricing: 

  • Google Meet is free to use with access to basic features
  • Business Starter: $6/month per user
  • Business Standard: $12/month per user
  • Business Plus: $18/month per user
  • Enterprise: custom priced  

Zoom pricing: 

  • Free version with limited functionality and attendee numbers
  • Pro Plan: $149.90/year per user
  • Business Plan: $199.90/year per user
  • Enterprise Plan: custom priced  

Switchboard pricing: 

  • Free: Includes limited features, rooms, and members for small teams or individuals.
  • Pro: As low as $10 member/month for up to 200 rooms and 500 members plus Switchboard AI and additional storage.
  • Enterprise: Custom pricing.

Google Meet vs Zoom vs Switchboard: meeting capacity

When it comes to virtual meeting tools, remember that it’s not all about how many people they can handle. Capacity is only one side of the story. You also want to make sure that your platform is helping your team work together effectively.

Google Meet capacity: 

  • Free account capacity: 100 participants 
  • Business Starter account capacity: 100 participants
  • Business Standard account capacity: 150 participants 
  • Business Plus and Enterprise account capacity: 500 participants 

Zoom capacity:

  • Free account capacity: 100 participants 
  • Pro account capacity: 100 participants 
  • Business account capacity: 300 participants
  • Enterprise capacity: 1000 participants 

Switchboard capacity:

Switchboard is made for highly collaborative, small remote businesses so it has capacity for up to 50 team members. With Switchboard, your people can always find each other—whether they’re in a meeting or not. This way, they can build deeper relationships, get work done in real time and async, and foster a positive remote work culture based on collaboration. 

Google Meet vs Zoom vs Switchboard: integrations

Integrations connect your video conferencing platform with other apps in your tech stack to give them superpowers. For example, if you integrate Google Meet with Slack, Slack notifies you every time you have an upcoming meeting and sends you the correct link. But remember, integrations also take time to set up and if one app goes down, the whole workflow goes with it.

Google Meet Integrations:

  • Google Workspace, including Docs, Sheets, and Slides
  • Google Classroom
  • Loom
  • Zapier to create custom integrations between Google Meet and apps like Slack, Trello, and Salesforce
  • Jamboard

Zoom integrations:

Zoom integrates with over 1,500 third-party apps like:

  • Slack
  • Microsoft Teams
  • Dropbox
  • HubSpot
  • Asana
  • Zapier 
  • Loom 

Switchboard integrations:

No integration required for browser-based apps—they all work in Switchboard. Simply copy and paste a link into the canvas or open a browser in your room. You're also not limited by which integrations your meeting platform has. Just log in and start working…that’s it. 

Switchboard vs Google Meet vs Zoom: Which should you pick?

Best for highly collaborative teams: Switchboard

Switchboard is ideal for highly collaborative, small to medium-sized remote or hybrid organizations (50 employees or less). It’s ideal if you’re looking for an alternative solution to traditional video conferencing tools as it lets you get together with your people for an interactive experience. Just like you would with an RPG.

Switchboard is perfect for different use cases like recurring internal team meetings, from all hands and virtual huddles to 1:1s and even games. Software and design teams can work together on product updates and new features and it’s also suitable for agencies, freelancers, and contractors that work directly with clients. You can also use its customizable client-specific rooms to create a centralized, interactive space for meetings, sales demos, and training. 

Best for companies already using Google Workspace: Google Meet

Google Meet is a convenient choice for companies that are already set up on Google Workspace. It’s user-friendly, effective, and a good choice for remote companies that prioritize face-to-face and real-time discussions rather than async teamwork.

Best for large meetings: Zoom 

Zoom can accommodate a large number of participants, which makes it ideal for large companies that need a reliable web conferencing tool. Its built-in whiteboard and messaging features help make meetings interactive. You can invite up to 100 attendees on the Basic and Pro plans, up to 300 on its Business plans, and up to 1000 on its Enterprise plan.

But if you’re a small, highly collaborative team, Zoom meetings lack the functionality you need for true side-by-side working. 

Check out our others posts to compare Zoom vs Teams or Zoom vs Gather.

Go beyond one-way meetings and unlock true collaboration with Switchboard 

Listening to someone tell a story can be fun, but it’s a lot more engaging when you get to play an active role in how it unfolds. And that’s exactly what tabletop role-playing games (RPGs) offer. They make storytelling more engaging and interactive by bringing you together with others to create your own characters and a shared experience. 

To help your distributed teams feel more connected and make remote work enjoyable and interactive, your meetings need to be less like one-sided narratives and more like collaborative games. 

But that’s not always easy to do when traditional online meeting tools mainly support single-player information sharing and lack the spontaneity you need to create a positive remote culture.

In this piece, we reviewed Switchboard, as well as two alternatives: Google Meet and Zoom. These are both popular, dependable tools for getting distributed teams together and discussing projects. But they’re not made for getting things done. 

For true engagement and collaboration, leaders of small remote and hybrid companies need software that acts as a central virtual hub so team members can always find each other and the information they need.

That’s why Switchboard goes beyond online meetings so your teams can work together async or in real time, and build relationships with the kind of spontaneous interactions you get in a physical office.

Ready to roll the dice and write your own story?

Want to have engaging online meetings that go beyond screen sharing and emoji reactions?
Switchboard lets you work side-by-side with your team and collaborate in real time or async.
Sign up for free

Frequently asked questions about Google Meet vs Zoom

What are the disadvantages of Google Meet?

While Google Meet has many helpful features, some of its disadvantages include:

  • Few interactive features 
  • No meeting recording on the free plan 
  • Only one person can control the screen at a time
  • Lacks real-time collaboration features 
  • Notes and chat content are lost after the meeting
  • Need to share invitations and meeting links beforehand

Is Google Meet safer than Zoom?

Both Google Meet and Zoom have security features in place to protect users' privacy and prevent unauthorized access to meetings. But safety for each platform can vary by meeting and setup. 

Google Meet uses encryption to protect meeting privacy and security, as well as two-factor authentication and the ability to control who can join. Zoom also uses encryption and offers security features such as password protection and the ability to lock meetings to prevent unwanted participants.

But Google Meet doesn’t offer end-to-end encryption, which means messages are only encrypted between your device and Google's servers, not between your device and the recipient’s. 

What is the difference between Google Meet and Zoom?

Google Meet and Zoom are both video conferencing platforms that allow users to participate in online meetings, collaborate on projects, and communicate with others in real time. But Google Meet integrates seamlessly with other Google Workspace apps, while Zoom doesn’t. Google Meet can also only accommodate up to 500 participants, while Zoom scales up to 1000. Finally, Zoom’s free plan limits meetings to 40 minutes, while Google Meet allows users to call for up to one hour for free.

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Want to have engaging online meetings that go beyond screen sharing and emoji reactions?

Switchboard lets you work side-by-side with your team and collaborate in real time or async.