Google is rolling out improved background effects to Meet on the web. You now get a more accurate background blur thanks to improved object separation. The company is also promising more effective and immersive background styles.
Google Meet, and pretty much all other videoconferencing platforms, offer customizable background effects. This allows you to conceal your background during meetings so the focus is on you. You can blur the background or replace it with less distracting custom images or videos. You can also use various effects or color walls as the background. They all work in real-time.
But since you aren’t always still during meetings, the custom backgrounds have to constantly adjust according to your body movements. As such, your real background may be visible at times, particularly around the edges separating you from the rest of the scene. Companies regularly work on it but there’s always room for improvement.
Google Meet has had more issues with edge detection if the person is wearing a hat or any other headgear. The latest update for the app on the web should now work better during those scenarios too. “Thanks to improved background and foreground separation, users can experience more accurate background blur, background replace, and immersive background and styles,” the company says.
Additionally, to ensure lag-free real-time background replacement, Google is now also allowing cloud-based processing of video effects. This would be particularly helpful for less powerful devices. The company says cloud-based processing will save up to 30 percent CPU power, effectively adding to the battery life. Google Meet will automatically adjust between device-based and cloud-based processing for optimal performance. But this currently only works for background blur and light adjustment. Support for background replace and other effects will come in the future.
Google Meet users are getting improved background effects on the web
The latest round of background-related improvements for Google Meet is already rolling out to users globally. If you use the videoconferencing platform on the web, you should see the changes during your next meeting. While the improved object separation will be available to everyone, Google is keeping cloud-based processing limited to select Workspace customers.
According to the official blog post, cloud-based processing of background effects will be available to Google Workspace Business Standard, Business Plus, Enterprise Standard, Enterprise Plus customers, and Workspace Individual users in Northern America, Europe, Northern Africa, Central Asia, and Southeastern Asia. Workspace Essentials, Business Starter, Enterprise Essentials, Education Fundamentals, Education Plus, Frontline, Nonprofits, legacy G Suite Basic and Business, and users with a personal Google Account won’t get it.