What is Google Meet Companion Mode?


Whether you work in person or remotely, attending meetings is essential. Google Meet’s companion mode makes it easy to contribute, no matter where you work from. Announced in September 2021, this feature allows everyone to use a second screen during a meeting. Here’s how to use Google Meet Companion mode and why it’s so important in the age of hybrid working.

What is Google Meet Companion Mode?

Google Meet Companion mode is a feature that allows each meeting participant to use a second screen during their meeting. This feature is especially useful for those who are in a meeting room with other people. Using companion mode, they can use a second screen to raise their hand or send a message in chat as an individual. It also helps those who only have one screen to declutter their screen by splitting content between two devices.


Both of these use cases make Companion Mode a useful enhancement to Google Meet Meetings. Even for those with multiple screens or at home, the ability to split meeting controls can be a useful tool. Let’s take a look at the difference between Participant Mode and Companion Mode.

Companion Mode vs Participant Mode

There are some differences between what you can do while in Participant Mode and Companion Mode. Here is a breakdown of those differences.

Here are the Google Meet features you get when you join a video call in companion mode:

  • Chat with other Google Meet participants
  • Share your screen
  • Access a virtual whiteboard to brainstorm ideas together
  • Turn on captions to easily follow what’s being said

Add-ons such as raising your hand, conducting polls, and Q&A are also available, but require a Google Workspace edition.

When you enter a meeting in companion mode, your audio and microphone will be muted. This avoids audio echoes for other participants. Google Meet won’t show your Companion Mode tile to other participants. Instead, the software will display your name followed by a Companion tag in the People menu.

Google Meet will hide the participant grid in companion mode. This simplifies the companion device experience so that it can be used to enhance participant mode.

To talk or listen to others, you need to connect to meeting room hardware or use a Nest Hub Max for the call. You can also join the call in non-companion mode on your laptop or mobile phone. Let’s see how to start using companion mode.

How to Start Companion Mode in Google Meet

Now that you know why companion mode is useful, let’s see how to start it.

There are two ways to connect your second device to your Google Meet call. The first is to enable companion mode from an invite link.

  1. To light up your secondary device.
  2. Open the meeting link.
  3. wait for it Ready to join us? screen to load.
  4. Select the Use companion mode link button.

The second way to activate companion mode is through the dedicated website.

  1. start your secondary device.
  2. Go to g.co/companion.
  3. Enter the meeting code or link in the Enter a code or link box.
  4. Click it Start companion button.

Remember that you need to sign in to the Google Account invited to the meeting on your second device. If not, you will need to get approval from the meeting host to join the call.

How to Share Your Screen Using Companion Mode

Sharing content on your device in companion mode is a useful way to divide your screens. Let’s see how to share the screen on your secondary device.

  1. Rejoin your meeting.
    • You may need to be admitted to your meeting by another attendee.
  2. Click it present now button at the bottom of your screen.
  3. Select the content you want to present.
  4. Check Share preview.
    • Check the Share system audio box if you want to share your audio.
  5. press the To share button.

Everyone can now see the content you’ve shared.

How to share your camera in companion mode

Not all devices have a serviceable camera. Companion mode allows you to use the camera from your secondary device during your meeting.

  1. Walk in the meeting.
    • You may have to wait to be admitted to the meeting.
  2. Click it Turn on the camera button.

Your camera will now share with the meeting from your secondary device.

How to raise your hand in companion mode

A question can sometimes arise while you are in a meeting. Google Meet includes a feature that lets you raise your hand, just like in real life.

  1. Login to the meeting.
    • Someone may need to let you into the meeting.
  2. Click it Raise your hand button.

Everyone should now see that your hand is up.

How to Enable Closed Captions in Companion Mode

If you’re hard of hearing or don’t understand something, subtitles can help. Captions generate a text log of what is being said.

  1. Begin the meeting.
    • A current participant may need to allow you to join the meeting.
  2. Click it Enable subtitles button.

You should now see the generated captions at the bottom of your screen.

FAQ – Google Meet Companion Mode

Let’s answer some common questions about companion mode.

Is companion mode available on mobile devices?

Companion mode is not available on Android or iOS. It’s limited to Google Meet Web, Nest Hub Max and others certified Google Meet hardware.

Do Companion Mode participants count towards the participant limit?

Yes, Google Meet will count connections using companion mode towards the 100 participant limit.

Should I join a Google Meet meeting with Companion mode only?

Companion mode aims to enhance your existing Google Meet video call with a second screen. You should not use your primary device and join the call in companion mode only. It disables audio, microphone and other videos on your device, so you won’t have any idea what is going on during the meeting.

Companion Mode makes it easy to include everyone in calls, no matter where they work from. With Companion Mode, everyone has a say and a second screen to access essential Google Meet features. Google Meet is so good that Google combines it with Google Duo to become the one-stop-shop for Google video calls.


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