The unforeseen COVID 19 intrusion changed the school and office environment as we knew it and prompted mass online migration. Somehow, life had to continue, and some brilliant minds invented video conferencing software such as Zoom to facilitate online meetings and classes right from the bedroom. But. In the race for video conferencing platforms superiority, Google has made much effort to close the gap with its competitor Zoom by launching Google Meet.
Meet Google Meet
The giant software company’s Google Meet is a video conferencing platform, just like Zoom, enabling users to remotely hold online classes and conferences. Working and learning from home means the absence of social interactions you previously enjoyed from your classmates and colleagues. Therefore, seeing their faces on the screen during a meeting is very important.
Initially, this was not possible in Google Meet. If you wanted to see the participants in a meeting, you had to install a third-party Google Chrome extension, for example, Google Meet Grid View Fix by Chris Gamble. However, to beat the competition, Google has added the Tiled View feature in its video conferencing software which displays up to 49 participants on the screen at once. Here’s how to enable the Tiled View feature.
How To Enable Tiled View in Google Method
When the third-party extensions misbehave, you are only left with the native tiled grid view from Google. Typically, the tiled grid view should launch by default when the meeting has lots of participants, but that’s not the case. Google Meet decides when and when not to display the grid view, which can be very inconvenient at times. Here’s how to manually launch the tiled grid view when you want it.
1. Join a Google Meet meeting on your device or create one if none is available.
2. In the meeting, look for three vertical dots in the control bar located at the lower side of the screen.
3. Select “Change Layout” from the options.
4. Hover over the displayed options and scroll down to the “Tiled” option.
The Tiled option is really beneficial in extra-large meetings, especially if you hate the changing screen when speakers take turns. You can now see up to 49 participants at the same spot if your screen is large enough, for example, a PC or iPad. Note that you will only see 12 participants despite your settings whenever a speaker from your meeting is presenting.
Smaller screens like the iOS and Android devices can only display up to four tiles on a single screen, and you will need to scroll down the meeting screen to see the rest of the participants.
Unpin a participant
Another advantage with Google Meet is the feature to pin a participant, which means that their camera feed or thumbnail will be continually visible to you. However, it may cause problems, especially when participants’ numbers exceed a reasonable grid size. You can solve this problem by unpinning a few participants using the following steps:
1. Click the participant’s icon at the bottom to open the participant list.
2. Click the “more options” button comprising of three dots next to the pinned member.
3. From the menu, click on “unpin.” That should solve the problem.
How to Use Google Meet Grid View (Fix) Extension?
The frequent Google Meet coding updates have interrupted the normal functioning of the third-party extensions since, as the name suggests, they are not owned by Google, which makes it difficult for them to keep up with what Google is doing. Users needed an extension that could add the grid layout on Google Meet when the original Gamble’s Google Meet Grid View failed.
Google Meet Grid View Not Working?
The developer says that Google Meet Grid View (Fix) will step in for the Google Meet Grid View when the extension fails. The nine-by-nine sized grid just works like the original extension without the pinning feature so that you can reserve the extra space for larger conferences.
To use the Google Meet Grid View (Fix) extension, you have to install it on the Google Chrome browser. It is available for any device that can support a chrome browser, although you can still try out this process on Vivaldi, Brave Browser, and Microsoft Edge, although the mileage will vary.
How to get and use ‘Google Meet Grid View Fix
To enable the grid view for large meetings on Google Meet, you need to install the “Google Meet Grid View (Fix)” extension on your Google Chrome browser. Chrome extensions are available for installation on any Chromium-based browser. Still, you can try using this extension on Brave Browser, Microsoft Edge, and Vivaldi, but keep in mind that your mileage may vary.
Follow the following installation process;
Navigate to the “Add to Chrome” button on the extensions page and click on it. A pop-up window will appear with the “Add extension” button. Click on it. Once installed, it will appear on the upper right corner of your screen alongside other extensions.
You can now join a Google Meet meeting and start using the grid layout. During the session, navigate to the top right corner of your screen and hover over the Grid button. Click on “Enable grid view by default” to regroup all thumbnails on your screen in the grid layout. Additionally, the Google Meet Grid View Extension (Fix) offers customization options like “On Screen Capture” mode, including yourself in the grid, locking participants without a video out of the screen, and highlighting speakers.
Now you can open Google Meet and join a meeting to start using the grid layout on your screen. Inside the meeting screen, click or hover over the Grid button at the top right and check the box adjacent to the ‘Enable grid view by default’ option.
This should be able to regroup all the video feeds on the Google Meet screen in grid form. You can also customize the grid view with additional options like Show participants with video only, Include yourself in the grid, Highlight speakers, and turn ON Screen Capture mode.
Use Alternative Extensions
You are probably wondering what if all these solutions failed to work, what next? Fortunately, third-party Meet Grid View extensions are mainly in the experimental phase, which means several developers are working to solve the problem. If one version fails to work on your devices, you can simply log into the Chrome web store, type Google Meet Grid View extensions and select the most suitable from the list. Examples include;
-Grid View for Google by W3Technic
-Google Meet Grid View (fix) by Simone Marullo
Google developers are working to solve the grid-view not working issue, and hopefully, they will come up with a solution later in the year.
Grid View Common Issues and Fixes
Remember that Google Meet Grid View is currently experiencing problems because of several Google coding updates which they cannot match because they are separate companies. Here are a few solutions if you run into problems with Google Meet’s Grid view.
1. Install the latest Grid View extension
Install the new version if you are still using the older version by logging into the Chrome web store, searching for Google Chrome Grid View (Fix) extension, clicking the “Add to browser” toggle, and confirming by clicking “Add extension.”
If you had the version previously installed and still encountering problems, update your current version. Typically, Chrome automatically updates the existing extensions once a new version is rolled out per Chrome’s schedule. This means you may get an automatic update a day later than when you expected it.
When the extension doesn’t update automatically for whatever reasons, you can manually update it. Just enter “chrome://extensions” on Chrome’s address bar followed by the Enter key. Select the “Developer mode” followed by the “Update” button. These steps will update the Google Meet Grid View extension alongside other installed extensions.
2. Disable then re-enable Google Meet Grid View extension
Sometimes the manually installed extension may not function properly. In this case, you can use the disable-enable trick. Feed “chrome://extensions” into the search bar followed by the Enter key. The disable button should appear at the bottom of a box labeled Google Meet Grid View extension.
Once disabled, you can re-enable by switching the toggle position back to ON. Countercheck that you didn’t download a duplicate version. You can also try uninstalling the current version and installing the original Google Meet Grid View. Note that duplication may stop both versions from running, so delete the earlier version first.
3. Create two user profiles on Google Chrome
A mix-up can sometimes occur when you use a single user profile for home and work, creating problems with the Google Meet Grid view. Separate profiles enable you to utilize different themes, extensions, bookmarks, and settings, which could ease the load on the work profile.
To create a new profile, open your profile picture and hit the “Add” button. You can select the work Chrome profile by clicking on the profile picture followed by the new profile. Please proceed to the Google Meet Grid View extension and confirm whether it is working on your new profile.
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