Chromebooks and Zoom Best Practices

1. REBOOT/RESTART YOUR COMPUTER REGULARLY:

This is the number one thing you should do with any computer problem:

  • Rebooting or shutting down your Chromebook is not the same as closing the Chromebook lid. Typically closing the lid just puts the Chromebook to sleep which helps with battery life. To completely turn off your Chromebook, make sure it is on and then hold the power button down until the screen goes completely black. Then press the power button again to turn it back on.

 

2. UPDATE YOUR COMPUTER AND BROWSER:

If Zoom had been working fine, but suddenly stopped working try the following:

  • Make sure your Zoom application is up to date - Zoom will give you a pop-up when it is time for an update

 

3. GET AN EXTERNAL MICROPHONE AND HEADPHONES:

If no one can hear you on Zoom when you are on your Chromebook, try the following:

  • Get headphones with a built-in microphone

  • Turn video off while talking

 

4. CHANGE INTERNET CONNECTION:

If you keep getting dropped off of Zoom - try the following:

  • Get a separate hotspot for the problem computer

  • Connect the computer to the internet with an ethernet cable. You will need a USB to ethernet adapter for Chromebooks without ethernet ports like this

 

5. STOP FEEDING THE MEMORY HOGS: 

If your Zoom experience on Chromebooks are generally just bad - try the following:

  • Close Tabs. Each tab takes up memory and Chromebooks have precious little memory 

  • Turn off Extensions. Each extension running in the background takes up processing power and memory. You don’t need to uninstall extensions. You can turn them off by going to chrome://extensions. Just slide the blue button to the left to turn off any extension. There are likely some extensions that you cannot turn off, just turn off what you can. (Custom cursors and themes eat memory up) 

  • Turn off Gallery View in Zoom. Every live image the computer has to process takes up bandwidth, CPU power, and memory

 

6. IT'S NOT THE DEVICE IT'S THE INTERNET:

Sometimes the issues you are having with Zoom have nothing to do with the device you are using but have everything to do with your internet connection. Without turning this into a deep ISP (Internet Service Provider) lesson, I want to clear up a few myths:

 

  • My Chromebook shows an excellent wireless connection. The problem can’t be on my end.

 

The bars that show you have a strong connection are showing that your computer is connected to the wireless router. The wireless router may still have limited or no internet access. 

  • I signed up for a 100MB connection from my ISP. So speed can’t be the issue.

 

When the stars align just right, you might get to use that full 100MB connection. Though typically your connection will be at least a little slower. Here are a few things that could be affecting your internet speed.

  • Other people using your internet connection. Are others streaming TV and movies while you are using Zoom? Is anyone in the house playing video games online? You are sharing that 100MB connection with everyone and every other internet-connected device in your house. These devices can have an even larger impact if, like you, these other users are connected wirelessly.

  • There could be an issue with your home’s internet connection. This issue could just be affecting you or it might be affecting your whole neighborhood. You can check your current internet speed at speedtest.net. Once you open the site, click on Go. This test will show your current upload and download speeds.

  • Most of the time we focus on download speed, but keep in mind that when you are streaming TO the internet, like you do when showing you video on Zoom, that is utilizing your upload speed.  Your ISP may have a decent download speed (good for streaming your movies), but your upload speed may be as little as 2 Mbps. That’s not really enough bandwidth for even one person on a virtual conference call. Now imagine that multiple people in your house all need to join multiple overlapping video conference sessions during the day. It doesn't work.

Excerpts from: https://www.schooledintech.com/best-practices-for-using-zoom-on-a-chromebook/