Google Meet is not going to allow meetings that last for unlimited time for free users and will introduce a 60-minute time limit to the group video calls. It would be a significant change for people who used the group video call feature for free. Google Meet with this particular move makes the platform more like Zoom, but a little better as Zoom has a 45-minute time limit on their group video calls. However, Google Meet calls will still be free and unlimited for three or fewer participants. If there are three or more people in the call, it will end after 60-minutes.
People can still practically take part in unlimited calls if they have three or more participants by leaving the previous meet and making a new link for a meeting. With this new regulation, Google Meet adds a small hurdle that people would have to cross to have a seamless meet. It does not cause that much hindrance, but people who engage in professional group calls might be affected.
To remove the 60-minute meeting restriction, people using the Google Workspace will need to upgrade their accounts to paid accounts to host unlimited timed Meet calls for three or more people. The upgrade cost of a premium Google Workspace account is $9.99 (approximately Rs. 745) per month. This particular regulation was initially decided by Google to be introduced in September 2020. However, they delayed it till March and then delayed it again till June 30.
The way this particular feature will function will be sort of similar to how Zoom works. Five minutes before the time limit of the meeting ends, all the call participants will get a notification saying that the meeting will end in five minutes. To avoid this, the host can purchase the upgrade or leave and re-host another meeting, which causes a minor hassle.
Free unlimited group calls were accommodating and provided Google Meet an edge over its competition, but the offering that Google initially made was too good to last for long. However, this is only applicable to calls with three or more participants, which leaves one-to-one calls capable of having no time limit. There are still workarounds for practically hosting unlimited calls with three or more people, but paying would be an easier option for professional organizations, who prefer meetings without hindrances.