Gadgets for humans

You can now blur your background straight from Google Meet

That's nifty

background blur setting

You no longer have to frantically hide the mess in your home before each conference call: Google Meet now lets you blur your background.

In a new blog post, the company revealed it’s added a feature that “will intelligently separate you from the background,” blurring the background but still keeping you clear and in focus. Just like the ability to filter out disruptive noise, the new functionality is part of Google‘s efforts to limit distractions during conference calls.

Here’s now this looks in action:

Pretty neat.

The feature is turned off by default, but you can easily enable it by clicking the “more” button (the three dots) in the bottom right corner and then clicking the blurred background icon. The cool bit is you can do this both during or before a meeting.

There’s a catch though: Google warns turning on background blurring might slow down your device, so it recommends turning off the functionality if you want other apps to run faster.

The feature should already be available for some users, but in case you don’t see it yet — hang in tight. Google is opting for a gradual rollout, so it might take some time.

In addition to background blurring, the Big G now also lets you see up to 49 people simultaneously when using the tiled view.

Ah, and by the way, if you’re that obsessed with keeping up appearances, you can make yourself look even better if you use your camera as a webcam. You can do that with Fujifilm, Sony, Canon, Olympus, and other camera brands.

For more gear, gadget, and hardware news and reviews, follow Plugged on Twitter and Flipboard.

Published September 16, 2020 — 10:46 UTC