So you’ve been invited to a Zoom party — congratulations! This short guide will ensure you have the best possible experience, and help you to avoid the pitfalls that catch many people out when they first join a Zoom meeting (or in this case, a Zoom Party!).
- Who is this Zoom guide for?
- Joining a Zoom party: a step-by-step guide
- Use the right device: a laptop or desktop computer is always the best option
- Ensure your speaker and microphone are working
- Download the Zoom Meetings app before the party
- Find a quiet location before joining the party
- Click on the Zoom Meeting (Party!) link
- Follow the Zoom prompt to test your audio
- Basic Zoom controls for participants
- Help – I only have an iPad/tablet/smartphone!
Who is this Zoom guide for?
This guide is for people who have been invited to a Zoom party and are new to the technology. The assumption is that you will have received an invite link to the party/Zoom Meeting.
Joining a Zoom party: a step-by-step guide
There are many things you can do as a Zoom participant. This guide will only cover the key considerations, to get you started on the right foot.
Use the right device: a laptop or desktop computer is always the best option
A laptop or desktop computer is always the best option for Zoom as all the application features are available, and the screen size is large. The next best option is a tablet or iPad, with the last choice being a smartphone. Tablets, iPads and phones will have less functionality than laptops, mainly due to the smaller screen size.
Ensure your speaker and microphone are working
Whatever device you are using, ensure the microphone and sound are both working. If you have one, use a headset, as it can improve the audio quality.
Download the Zoom Meetings app before the party
Click here to download. This is very important! If you don’t download the app and end up using the ‘web browser’ version, your experience will be limited, and several features will be missing. Don’t do it — you will be frustrated (we’ve made this mistake so you don’t have to!).
Find a quiet location before joining the party
If you don’t have a headset, make sure you find a quiet place to join the party, as background noise can make it difficult to hear and be heard.
Click on the Zoom Meeting (Party!) link
Your host should have sent you this link in advance. If you have downloaded the Zoom Meetings app and are on a laptop, you will see this page after clicking the link:
- If prompted for a password, your host should have provided you with this in your invite email.
- You may be placed in a ‘Waiting Room’. Relax — the host will be notified to admit you.
Follow the Zoom prompt to test your audio
- When you enter the room, Zoom will offer to test your Speaker and Microphone. Click on the button, and follow the instructions.
If all has gone smoothly, you are now in the party! Enjoy!
If you’ve encountered issues, you can find extra support and troubleshooting here: Zoom help for joining a meeting.
Basic Zoom controls for participants
Below is an overview of the basic Zoom controls (as viewed on a laptop/desktop computer). You will most likely want to set your view to ‘Gallery View‘. On a laptop/desktop, the view switcher can be found at the top-right corner (see below).
On a computer, Gallery View can display up to 49 participants on one screen. The actual number will vary, depending on the power/CPU of your computer, and can often be lower.
Help – I only have an iPad/tablet/smartphone!
Whatever device you may have, make sure you download the Zoom Meeting app. Navigation varies on different operating systems, but generally speaking, the following instructions should demonstrate how to use Gallery View:
- Tablet/iPad: Tap on the screen and controls should appear. Tap on the grid icon. The maximum number of participants visible on-screen is 9.
- Phone: In the bottom-right corner, tap on the speaker/host video, and swipe left or right to change View settings. The maximum number of participants visible on-screen in Gallery View is 4.
For further assistance, you can visit this Zoom help article to view screenshots on how to use Gallery View on different devices.