10 Fun Things to Do With Zoom
For the uninitiated, Zoom is a video and audio conferencing tool. Its primary focus is on enterprise meetings, but it also works as a platform for catching up with family and friends.
While everyone knows how to simply sit and chat on Zoom, there are lots of other fun things to do with Zoom. All of which will liven up even the dullest Zoom chat. If it’s appropriate to do so.
1. Record a Podcast
These days, everyone has a podcast, so you may as well start one too. Zoom has the ability to record audio from calls and, more importantly, record participants’ audio streams as separate files. So, with the addition of some podcast editing software you can create a podcast out of a Zoom call.
To get going, open Zoom and go to Settings > Recording and tick Record a separate audio file for each participant. Here you can also change the save folder and other options like whether to record the video too.
While in the Zoom call, press Record > Record on this Computer. When the call ends, the audio will convert automatically and the save folder will open.
2. Play Jackbox Games
Jackbox is a long-running series of party video games that are bound to get everyone laughing. Each “party pack” comes with a number of mini games inside. They are all wonderfully themed and varied, based around trivia, drawing, comedy, and more.
The best part is that only one person on the Zoom call needs to own the game. That person shares their screen (click Share Screen from the bottom toolbar, select the Jackbox application, then Share) and everyone else then logs in to the Jackbox website with a private code. Everyone then plays on their phone and watches the game play out on the Zoom call.
3. Mess Around With Virtual Backgrounds
Zoom has an awesome feature called virtual background. This allows you to display any image or video in the background of your webcam, even if you don’t have a green screen. It works surprisingly well.
You can use virtual backgrounds to appear in your favorite fictional setting or to imply you’re relaxing on a beach. Or you can get creative and record your own video. Zoom Backgrounds is a website with some examples to get you started.
Go to Settings > Virtual Background and click the plus icon to add an image or video. Beneath Choose Virtual Background, click the thumbnail of the image or video you wish to use. Ensure that I have a green screen is only ticked if you do—frankly, the feature is good enough not to need one.
4. Play Pictionary or Hangman
Pictionary is the classic game where you split into teams and draw pictures of words or phrases that your teammates need to guess. Hangman is similar, except people guess one letter at a time. You can play both of these in a Zoom call. To begin, you’ll need a random word generator.
Next, from the bottom toolbar, click Share Screen > Whiteboard > Share. This will open an interactive space that everyone can use to draw their creations. Be sure to make use of the annotation toolbar that offers features like Stamp, Eraser, and Format.
5. Watch YouTube or Netflix Together
If you can’t get together to watch something as a group, you can still replicate the experience on Zoom. If you want to watch the wealth of content available on YouTube, check out our guide detailing how to watch YouTube together .
Alternatively, if you fancy popping on a television show or movie, here’s how to watch Netflix with friends far away . You can see other people’s reactions and chat about what you’re watching on Zoom, just like you would in person.
6. Dance and Bust Some Moves
There’s nothing better to boost the mood than getting up and dancing. You can use a Zoom call to share the experience with others so that you’re all busting the same moves to the same song at the same time.
To have the best coordinated experience, use Just Dance Now. This is an app that links up to the screen. Once on it, you will get a unique room code that you can share with others on the call. The free version of the app allows for a couple of songs, after which you have to start paying.
Of course, you could always just invent your own dance moves to your favorite songs.
7. Play Checkers, Go Fish, Cards Against Humanity, and More
Playing simple card games or board games is a joy when done together, so why not replicate that fun on a Zoom call? Thanks to PlayingCards.io, that’s easy. Go to the site and choose a game to play. The site features Checkers, Go Fish, Remote Insensitivity (a Cards Against Humanity knock-off), and more.
You will be given a link to share with your friends, so all of you will be playing in the same room. Then simply watch the reactions of everyone on the Zoom call as you swipe their cards (or lose, but hopefully not).
8. Sing Karaoke
You might not have the voice of an angel, but no one cares when you do karaoke. A Zoom call is the perfect way to group together and sing your heart out to the classics. To keep you all in sync, use one of our recommended ways to listen to music with friends far away .
You could turn it into a challenge and try to sing along without the aid of lyrics. If you do need a helping hand, there are many sites to find song lyrics online that will give you the right words—but they won’t help you sing in tune.
9. Host a Dinner Party
Hosting a dinner party is joyous, but it’s also a lot of work. Take out some of the effort by hosting your dinner party on Zoom. Everyone can get dressed up in their fineries, bring a bottle of something to drink, but then just eat whatever they would have done normally.
10. Host a Trivia Game
Everyone loves a good trivia quiz, as they get to flaunt their knowledge and impress everyone. And it’s easy to host a trivia quiz on Zoom. Just get everyone to compile a list of questions or use a service like TriviaMaker.
Zoom has a small selection of reactions that you can use. Click Reactions on the bottom toolbar to bring them up; perhaps the first person to use the reaction gets to answer. Also, click Manage Participants and there are more reactions like yes and no, which you could use for 50/50 trivia questions.
There Are Lots of Fun Things to Do With Zoom
These are just some of the many fun things you can do with Zoom, or any video chat app for that matter, for example Houseparty. Allowing you to add some variety to your Zoom calls without much effort. And if none of these appeal, get your thinking cap on and create your own fun things to do with Zoom.
If you’re new to Zoom and want to know more about its features, see our guide on how to use Zoom to host online meetings .