However, the emoji do not remain static as with Zoom. A line of responses used during the conversation will instead appear on the left side of the screen and burst if multiple people use the same one. Little emoji badges will also appear in the top left corner of your video tile so you can see who commented on what. While I haven’t had a chance to try it out myself yet, it seems like a nice way to spice up typically routine meetings.
For starters, Google is introducing the heart, thumbs-up, party-popper, wave, joy, surprised, thinking, crying, and thumbs-down emojis. It’s not the full range of emoji responses that Zoom offers, but it’s still a start.
You can use a comment by selecting the “smile” icon in Meet’s control bar, where you can then choose the emoji you want to use, as well as a skin tone, which Google will then apply to all other comments that can change color.
Google says the feature is now available on Google Meet for the web, iOS devices, and Meet hardware devices. It hasn’t arrived on Android yet, but we’ve asked Google for more information on when it might start rolling out.
In addition to emoji reactions, Google is introducing neat 360-degree backgrounds to the Meet mobile app that move as you rotate your camera.
You can see how this feature works in the GIF above, which shows how the background changes when the camera is placed in different areas. This feature is coming to both Android and iOS in the coming weeks. It will first have a beach themed background, and then others called oasis, sky city and mountain temple will arrive.