Slack + Microsoft Teams + Webex News

Zoom Free vs Zoom Paid: 4 Tiers To Consider

Blog
Zoom free vs Zoom paid

author:

Zoom Free vs Zoom Paid: 4 Tiers To Consider

Zoom Free vs Zoom Paid

Out of a large pool of video conferencing systems to emerge over the last few years, Zoom has managed to stand out and gain increased popularity through it’s free and paid options.

Zoom provides a free tool that offers 40-minute video calls with up to 100 attendees, making it easy to create and access a meeting. 

But is Zoom really free?

Zoom Basic (free) has a lot to offer. However, as businesses grow, you’ll find it almost inevitable not to upgrade to one of Zoom’s paid accounts. 

What is the difference between Zoom free and Zoom paid?

Zoom has two types of offerings: Zoom free accounts, which they call Basic, and Zoom paid accounts. Among the paid Zoom accounts, there are Pro, Business, and Enterprise editions.

Zoom free accounts are feature-rich and can be sufficient for an individual. Yet for a business, even a small one, a paid Zoom account can have some useful features that prove your return on investment almost immediately.

In this article, we’ll list the major advantages found in Zoom paid accounts.

Let’s start with a comparison table of all the features available so you have a fair overview of Zoom Free vs Zoom Paid.

FeatureBasicProBusinessEnterprise
Number of Participants 100100300500
Unlimited Group Meetings
Unlimited one-on-one Meetings
Group Meeting Duration40 mins30 hours30 hours30 hours
RecordingLocalLocal & 1 GB Cloud (per license)Local & 1 GB Cloud (per license)Local & Unlimited Cloud
Live transcription
Polling
License Count11-910-9950+
Technical SupportHelp CenterHelp CenterHelp CenterHelp Center
Billing Cycle and TermsMonthly or AnnualMonthly or Annual*Multi-year contracts available through salesAnnual Agreements Only*Can be paid in full or month to month
Telephone Dial-InToll-basedToll-basedToll-based
Screen Sharing
Breakout Rooms
Virtual Background
Personal Meeting ID
Zoom Chat
Host Controls
Co-Annotation on Screen Share
Remote Keyboard & Mouse Control
Whiteboarding
Multi-Share
TLS Encryption
AES-256 Encryption for real-time content
Waiting Room
Built into Zoom for Home Devices
Pin Multiple People
Spotlight Multiple People
Filters
Assign Meeting Scheduler
REST APIPro REST API Rate LimitsREST API Rate LimitsREST API Rate Limits
Skype for Business (Lync) interoperability
Streaming
Reporting
User Management
Admin Portal
LTI Integration
Recording Transcripts
Branding
Managed Domains
SSO
Language Interpretations
Customer Success Manager
Executive Business Reviews
Bundle Discounts

Next, we’ll run through some of the standout features you’ll receive when you upgrade to a paid Zoom account.

If you’re looking for a specific plan, use the menu to skip ahead:

  1. Zoom Pro plan
  2. Zoom Business plan
  3. Zoom Enterprise plan

Zoom Pro plan

Zoom Pro is the first tier of the paid accounts. It works perfectly for small teams and has some new features attractive to larger businesses.

As well as some additional business features, you also get every feature included in the previous tiers.

Let’s look at what’s new when you upgrade to Zoom Pro.

No 40-minute Limit in group meetings

Zoom meeting limit

If you’re an individual using Zoom for your one-on-one meetings only, then the Basic plan might be enough. It offers unlimited one-on-one meetings at no cost.

But, if you need to meet with more than one person (as a host, you count toward the meeting participants) then your meetings will be limited to 40 minutes. 

After you reach this time limit, your meeting ends and you’ll need to start another meeting. 

With a paid account, your meetings can virtually last for as long as you need (the cap is 30 hours) without having to worry about your meeting ending abruptly. 

Record meetings to the cloud

Shahira Elgashi works as an independent real-estate coach in New Jersey. Her job involves giving training to real-estate agents which includes recording and sharing the training. 

“I really like saving over the cloud. It’s sharing-friendly and I don’t have to worry about storage.” 

A free Zoom account allows you to save your recordings on your computer. But, for better collaboration, recording your meetings to the cloud allows for a seamless sharing experience. 

The “Record to the Cloud” feature is automatically enabled in all Zoom paid accounts. Once you start a meeting and choose “Record to the Cloud”, everything included in your meeting is recorded in the Zoom cloud.

Storage is limited to 1GB per licensed user. You can add more storage capacity if you need to according to Zoom’s additional storage plans. 

Zoom cloud storage costs

Live stream meetings and webinars 

Zoom live stream webinar

Streaming to your social accounts is only enabled when you pay for any of Zoom’s paid accounts. While you can share your Zoom meeting link with many people, live streaming offers more options.

If you need to host events, or run webinars, streaming to Facebook or YouTube will get you much more exposure. People attending your meeting from any of these platforms will be able to view and comment on your video. 

After you enable the “Allow livestreaming of webinars” (or meetings) option, you just need to configure the live stream settings to choose which social platform you want to use.

Live stream from Zoom to Facebook and YouTube

Easier note-taking with live transcription

A new feature that Zoom has added to its paid plans is the “Live Transcription” feature, which Zoom also calls “closed captioning”. It’s a real time transcription of what’s being said in the meeting. 

The feature makes it easier to do a text-based search and keep a record of the meeting. You don’t have to go through the meeting video to find specific sections.

Only the host of the meeting can enable the Live Transcription feature. Until then, participants can’t see the Live Transcription option on their screens.  

Creating polls

Zoom polling

Another handy feature that can only be found in Zoom’s paid accounts is Polling. 

If your job involves holding online sessions all the time, creating polls is an efficient and quick way to gather participants’ feedback.

Zoom’s polling feature lets you create single choice or multiple choice questions polls that you can launch during the meeting. You can do them anonymously, and download a report after the meeting.

Zoom Pro full feature list

FeaturePro
Number of Participants 100
Unlimited Group Meetings
Unlimited One-on-One Meetings
Group Meeting Duration30 hours
RecordingLocal & 1 GB Cloud (per license)
Live Transcription
Polling
License Count1-9
Technical SupportHelp Center
Billing Cycle and TermsMonthly or Annual
Telephone Dial-InToll-based
Screen Sharing
Breakout Rooms
Virtual Background
Personal Meeting ID
Zoom Chat
Host Controls
Co-Annotation on Screen Share
Remote Keyboard & Mouse Control
Whiteboarding
Multi-Share
TLS Encryption
AES-256 Encryption for Real-time Content
Waiting Room
Built into Zoom for Home Devices
Pin Multiple People
Spotlight Multiple People
Filters
Assign Meeting Scheduler
REST APIPro REST API Rate Limits
Skype for Business (Lync) Interoperability
Streaming
Reporting
User Management

Zoom Business plan

In addition to all the features in Zoom Pro, the Business plan has some more that serve small and medium businesses.

You also get every feature included in the previous tiers.

Increased number of participants

While Zoom Basic and Pro are limited to 100 participants per meeting, Zoom Business lets you host meetings that include up to 300 interactive participants. 

Branding

This feature allows you to create a custom URL (yourcompany.zoom.us) and customize the company’s landing page. So, instead of having a standard landing page that looks like this:

How to remove Zoom branding

You can customize your landing page to something that looks like this:

Customized Zoom branding

Zoom Single Sign-on (SSO)

With a Zoom Business account, you can log in using your company credentials. You don’t need to register as a user in Zoom, only an approved custom URL (vanity URL) is required.

Zoom Business full feature list

FeatureBusiness
Number of Participants 300
Unlimited Group Meetings
Unlimited one-on-one Meetings
Group Meeting Duration30 hours
RecordingLocal & 1 GB Cloud (per license)
Live Transcription
Polling
License Count10-99
Technical SupportHelp Center
Billing Cycle and TermsMonthly or Annual*Multi-year contracts available through sales
Telephone Dial-InToll-based
Screen Sharing
Breakout Rooms
Virtual Background
Personal Meeting ID
Zoom Chat
Host Controls
Co-Annotation on Screen Share
Remote Keyboard & Mouse Control
Whiteboarding
Multi-Share
TLS Encryption
AES-256 Encryption for real-time content
Waiting Room
Built into Zoom for Home Devices
Pin Multiple People
Spotlight Multiple People
Filters
Assign Meeting Scheduler
REST APIREST API Rate Limits
Skype for Business (Lync) Interoperability
Streaming
Reporting
User Management
Admin Portal
LTI Integration
Recording Transcripts
Branding
Managed Domains
SSO
Language Interpretations

Zoom Enterprise plan

For companies with larger numbers of users, more premium features are offered within Zoom Enterprise.  

You also get every feature included in the previous tiers.

More attendees per meeting

With Zoom Enterprise, companies can host up to 500 attendees in a single meeting. You can also increase participants capacity to reach 1,000 participants with an optional bundle. 

Unlimited cloud storage 

Unlike Zoom Pro and Business, where you’re limited to just 1GB of cloud storage, Zoom Enterprise gives you unlimited cloud storage when you record your meetings to the Cloud.

Zoom Enterprise full feature list

FeatureEnterprise
Number of Participants 500
Unlimited Group Meetings
Unlimited One-on-One Meetings
Group Meeting Duration30 hours
RecordingLocal & Unlimited Cloud
Live Transcription
Polling
License Count50+
Technical SupportHelp Center
Billing Cycle and TermsAnnual Agreements Only*Can be paid in full or month to month
Telephone Dial-InToll-based
Screen Sharing
Breakout Rooms
Virtual Background
Personal Meeting ID
Zoom Chat
Host Controls
Co-Annotation on Screen Share
Remote Keyboard & Mouse Control
Whiteboarding
Multi-Share
TLS Encryption
AES-256 Encryption for real-time content
Waiting Room
Built into Zoom for Home Devices
Pin Multiple people
Spotlight Multiple people
Filters
Assign Meeting Scheduler
REST APIREST API Rate Limits
Skype for Business (Lync) Interoperability
Streaming
Reporting
User Management
Admin Portal
LTI Integration
Recording Transcripts
Branding
Managed Domains
SSO
Language Interpretations
Customer Success Manager
Executive Business Reviews
Bundle Discounts

How much is Zoom monthly?

Zoom has three paid options. Both the Pro and Business plans can be paid for either monthly or annually. 

To subscribe to the Enterprise plan, you need to contact Zoom’s sales team. 

ProBusinessEnterprise
$14.99/license/month or $149.90/license/year$19.99/license/month or $199.90/license/year$240/license/year

Connecting Zoom to other platforms

Whether you opt for Zoom free or Zoom paid, don’t forget to factor in your external contacts who you will still want to message on a day-to-day basis.

If your suppliers are using Microsoft Teams, you can connect Zoom Chat to Microsoft Teams.

Connect Zoom Microsoft Teams

Perhaps, your contractors all use Slack. You can connect Zoom Chat to Slack.

Slack Zoom integration

You might even have internal colleagues using Webex because they always used it in the office. You can connect Zoom Chat to Webex.

Webex Zoom integration

Connect Zoom Chat to your other platforms like Microsoft Teams, Slack, & Webex

Zoom’s growth throughout 2020 was both phenomenal and unexpected. So much so that you’ve got a pocket (or pockets) of users who prefer Zoom Chat for messaging.

If you want to keep those users connected to your Teams, Slack, and Webex users, make sure you’re first to hear when our Zoom integration goes live.

Join our waitlist.