Zoom Meetings is a widely used software that allows people from different places to have online meetings through video and audio. However, there is a time limit of 40 minutes for free Zoom meetings. If you’re wondering how to extend Zoom meeting time last longer, this article will provide solutions to bypass the time limit in Zoom’s free plan. Additionally, we will introduce three alternative platforms you can consider.
How to Extend Zoom Meeting Time
Do you want to know how to make your Zoom meetings last longer? Currently, free users of Zoom have a time limit of 40 minutes for their calls, no matter which version of Zoom they are using, such as the app, desktop client, web portal, or progressive web app (PWA).
Once the 40 minutes are up, the Zoom session will automatically end. However, there are two easy ways to extend the time limit and keep your Zoom call going for longer. Let’s take a look at these methods step by step.
Method 1: By upgrading to pro account
If you want to extend your Zoom meeting time beyond 40 minutes one way is to upgrade to a Pro account.If you decide to upgrade to a Pro account, which costs around $15 per month, you can enjoy a longer meeting time of up to 30 hours. This should be more than enough for most users.
To upgrade to a Pro account, follow these steps:
- Sign in to the Zoom Web Portal using your free account.
- Click on Account Management, then Billing in the navigation panel.
- Select Current Plans, then click on Upgrade Account.
- Choose the Pro plan and customize it according to your needs, such as the number of licenses and payment options.
- Save your changes and proceed to checkout.
- Provide the necessary contact and billing information.
- Select a payment method and review the Terms of Service.
- Confirm your purchase by clicking Upgrade Now.
- Upgrading to a Pro account not only extends your meeting time but also allows you to conduct larger meetings with more participants.
* Remember, upgrading to a Pro account comes with a cost, so consider your budget before making the decision. However, if you prefer not to upgrade, there are alternative ways to extend the meeting minute limit without spending any money.
Method 2: Without upgrading to a pro account
If you don’t want to upgrade to a pro account, there’s another way to extend your Zoom meeting time. Instead of starting an instant meeting, you need to schedule the meetings in advance. This method works for the Zoom website, mobile app, and other versions of Zoom.
Here’s how you can do it:
Step 1: Schedule a Zoom meeting
- On the Zoom desktop client, click on the calendar icon to schedule a meeting.
- Enter the meeting details in the pop-up window and click on the Schedule button.
Step 2: End the meeting
- When the scheduled meeting time is about to end, a countdown will appear in the Zoom window.
- As the meeting host, click on the End button at the right corner of the screen.
Step 3: Leave the meeting temporarily
- Click on the Leave Meeting button. When the host leaves, the meeting will end for all participants.
- Be careful not to click on “End Meeting for All” as it will not allow you to extend the meeting.
Step 4: Restart the meeting
- The host needs to restart the meeting using the same Meeting ID.
- Ask the attendees to click on the same Meeting ID to enter a new meeting that lasts for another 40 minutes.
You can repeat these steps as many times as needed to extend the meeting for hours. Additionally, you can use this method to incorporate short breaks between the 40-minute sessions. For example, if you want to have a 5-minute break after 30 minutes of the meeting, simply select the Leave the Meeting button and restart the meeting after the break.
By following these steps, you can continue your Zoom meetings without the time limit of the free plan.
Great Alternatives to Zoom
Google Meet is a video conferencing service developed by Google, replacing Google Hangouts and Google Chats. It offers features like closed captions, layout switching to show active participants, and a 60-minute meeting limit with up to 100 participants. Pricing starts at $7.99 per user/month, and it has positive customer reviews.
Microsoft Teams is a powerful communication platform that is part of the Microsoft 365 office suite. Free users can conduct unlimited meetings without time limits during the pandemic, with a maximum capacity of 100 participants. It also provides 10 GB of cloud storage per user. Pricing for Microsoft Teams starts at $4 per user/month and has good customer reviews.
Cisco Webex is a web and video conferencing tool that supports online meetings, screen sharing, and webinars. It allows up to 100 people in meetings with a 50-minute time limit. It supports video calling on various platforms and makes it easy to add participants during a meeting. Webex offers a free plan with basic video calling features and has positive customer reviews.
In conclusion, video conferencing tools like Zoom have played a crucial role in facilitating remote and hybrid work setups for countless businesses during the COVID-19 pandemic. However, the 40-minute time limit on Zoom meetings can sometimes be a hindrance.
The good news is that you have options to overcome this limitation. By following the steps mentioned earlier, you can extend the duration of your Zoom meetings or consider upgrading to a Pro account for more flexibility and longer meeting times.
Alternatively, if Zoom doesn’t meet your needs or preferences, there are other video conferencing tools available. The alternatives we discussed earlier offer similar features to Zoom but with more relaxed time constraints, allowing for smoother and uninterrupted meetings.
Ultimately, the goal is to find the right video conferencing solution that suits your requirements and ensures productive and efficient communication among team members, regardless of the time limitations.
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