Google is still making Google Meet the ultimate video conferencing tool for work, school, and even personal use. For desktop users, you can run Meet on your browser, but Google has now released an app version for your computers and laptops. Well, it’s not an app per se, but rather a Progressive Web Application (PWA), so you don’t need to install a separate app, just add it to your Chrome browser. Google has actually been pushing for PWAs in the IT industry, so this is just the last of their proprietary services converted into one.
Google says the Meet PWA is the best way to use the video conferencing service on your desktop. There doesn’t seem to be a difference between this and the browser experience. In fact, the ad says that Meet PWA has the same functionality as Meet on the web. The main difference is that Meet will no longer be in the browser tab, but in a separate window that you can easily switch to rather than switching between tabs in your Chrome browser.
You will still need to have Chrome installed on your desktop and it should be version 73 or later for Meet PWA to run. You just need to go to the Google Meet homepage meet.google.com and in the upper right part of the browser you will see an installation icon in the URL bar. Just tap on it and it will be automatically “installed”. You will see the Meet PWA in your app platform. You’ll still be able to use Meet for the web, but Google recommends that Windows, macOS, Chrome OS, and Linux users use the app instead.
If this is your first time encountering PWA, it is basically a web app that offers the same experience as a regular desktop app. But you don’t actually install an app, and it shouldn’t take up a lot of memory or disk space. There are also mobile PWAs that will be very useful for those who save space and memory on their mobile devices. There doesn’t seem to be a PWA for Meet on mobile as they insist that you use the standalone app or the one built into Gmail.
The Google Meet PWA is available for Google Workspace customers and for G Suite Basic and Business customers with a personal Google account. A few weeks ago, Google reported that free Gmail users are now limited to 60 minutes for group calls. One-to-one calls can still last up to 24 hours for free and business users.