Update 11th April
Many of the documents and videos contained in the links below are very detailed. Chris Middleton has produced a short set of instructions covering how to install Zoom. Click here to read them.
Update 9th April
A new version has been released with change/enhanced security features. It is advisable to update your current version.
Zoom is one of the most popular videoconferencing available today. It is has been used by the BBC and the Cabinet Office. It comes in a number of flavors. The free version is constrained to a time limit on the sessions of 40 minutes for sessions with more than two links, although there is no limit to the number of session allowed in a day! Three grandchildren on one screen only counts as one link! Videoconferencing sounds a grand term, but Zoom can be used very simply on a one to one basis, in which case there is no time limit to the session. If you are only wanting a one to one, then there are alternatives such as WhatsApp and FaceTime. Zoom is supported by desktops (but you need a webcam!), laptops, smartphones and tablets. To receive a call, one only need to install the App - there is no need to register.
There is a huge amount of help material available, in particular the video help sessions are excellent. I am adding some links below, which will take you to the main U3A website - there is no point in me reinventing the wheel. Additional information will be added in due course, including members' experiences and suggestions.
For Zoom use on tablets and smartphones click here.
At the end of this document you will find a large number of further links into the Zoom website and also to YouTube videos.
For Zoom use on desktops and laptops click here
Some members have found that it is harder to conduct a meeting online, so don't try to be too ambitious initially. You will probably find that a 30-40 minute session initially will be a good trial for your group. If you find you want longer you can either book two or three sessions with a break in between or consider using Skype which does not have the 40 minute limit. There is a Zoom Pro version for £11.99 month which allows meeting durations of 24hrs and other benefits, but obviously it is up to individual groups to decide if they want an organiser to sign up for this.
Frequently Asked Questions - try this site at the University of California