Around updates
Around updates
around.co

Product Updates: Early July 2021 Edition ๐Ÿ”ฎ


We're kicking off July with a list of requested improvements and fixes in preparation for a larger release coming soon.

Improvements ๐ŸŒŸ

  • Campfire for All: By popular demand, teams of any size (including teams of 1) can now ignite a roaring fire in Campfire Mode by clicking in the middle of the circular empty space a few times. We've also made the clickable area a bit bigger so it's easier to get your fire going. ๐Ÿ”ฅ

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  • Join Meetings in Browser: We've updated the pre-meeting messaging, so joining an Around meeting is easier than ever for people outside of your team. Once you share a meeting link with a guest, they'll have an option to join from the browser without needing to download the app. We currently support Google Chrome and Microsoft Edge, with Safari and Firefox coming soon.

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Fixes ๐Ÿ›

Here are some of the highlights:

General

  • The Report an Issue dialog now loads properly
  • Notifications now show on the active display instead of always on the right-most display
  • Fixed a bug that prevented Copy Meeting Link from working while in Minimal Mode

macOS

  • Re-ordered the Apple Touch Bar video filters

Android

  • Fixed an issue where in-app notifications appeared in the middle of the screen


Whatโ€™s Coming ๐Ÿšดโ€โ™€๏ธ

Later this year, weโ€™ll be adding more of your top requests, including the ability to record your meetings, draw directly on a screen share, and vertical floating mode.


That's all for now! Ping us at support@around.co if you run into any issues or just want to say hallo. ๐Ÿ˜

Product Updates: June 2021 Edition ๐Ÿ”ฎ


Whatโ€™s New ๐Ÿšจ

  • Mobile App (iOS and Android): The Around experience you know and love is now available on mobile! Take your brain for a walk and stay connected with your team on the go with our mobile app, an audio-only experience optimized for collaborative walking meetings. ๐Ÿšถโ€โ™€๏ธโ˜€๏ธ

    With the mobile app, you can join or start an Around call, instantly handoff from computer to phone (and back), react or respond to conversations with chat messages, GIFs and emojis, share images from your camera roll and view high-res screen shares.

    Just like our desktop app, we've baked in AI noise suppression, meaning others on the call should only be able to hear the crystal-clear sound of your lovely voice. Feel free to try it near planes, trains, and automobiles (and any other outside noises!), and let us know what you think.

    Visit around.co/download from your mobile device to download the app now.

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  • Linux App (Beta): Bring Around to your wonderful devs with our Linux app! A link to the public beta and all the information you need to get started can be found here ๐Ÿง.

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  • Handoff: This may sound familiar: you start a call on your laptop, but need to take the dog for a walk or run an errand. ๐Ÿฆฎ By opening Around on another device and tapping Handoff, you can seamlessly transition your current call without interrupting the meeting. In addition to mobile, Handoff also works if you need to transition between computers or our web app.

Handoff [READY].jpg

  • Voice Channels: Just like Around has different modes for different types of meetings, we also realize there are times when you don't need the added pressure of video on. That's why we built Voice Channels (formerly called Audio Rooms). These can be created directly from the lobby and have all the room features you loveโ€ฆ but with 100% less video.

  • Minimal Mode: For those moments when you need every inch โ€“ or pixel โ€“ of screen real estate. Click the Enter Minimal Mode icon in the top right corner of your app to instantly shrink Around to its smallest footprint yet.

Minimal Mode [READY].jpg

  • Native Menus: The Lobby and Room magic menus have been replaced with device-native menus that are no longer obscured by the height of the floating window. Bonus tip: The new menus are a great place to find all of Around's helpful shortcuts. ๐Ÿ‘‹๐Ÿผ

  • Choose your filter from your Touch Bar (Mac): Looking for an easier way to change video filters? Quickly browse through and select your video filter right from the Apple Touch Bar by tapping the ๐ŸŒˆ emoji.

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  • Face Mask Mode: Be heard clearly even while wearing a mask! Click the audio dropdown and select Enable Face Mask Mode to immediately improve muffled speech, making it easier for others to understand what you're saying. โœจ

Mask Filter [READY].jpg

  • Add your team to multiple Rooms: Instead of having to add a team member to each room individually, you can now generate an invitation which will give them access to any rooms you choose. From the Lobby, click on your avatar and select Setup Your Team to get started.


Improvements ๐ŸŒŸ

  • Now everyone can see at least 10 people in Campfire Mode
  • Increased screen sharing FPS when remote controlling screen
  • Audio pipeline tweaks to enhance playback volume
  • EchoTerminator improvements to mix participants with less distortion
  • Reduced app launch time
  • Updated chat UI to make it easier to read and copy messages
  • Switch to Floating Mode when using other apps will now only transition to Floating Mode from Campfire Mode


Fixes ๐Ÿ›

Here are some of the highlights:

General

  • Fixed a bug where a user's video could "bleed" at different resolutions
  • Fixed an issue where a user's circle could be shown multiple times

macOS

  • Disconnecting a monitor while a new notification is present will no longer push it out of position
  • Floating windows will now correctly appear over a full screen workspace in Split View
  • Stopping screen sharing on Big Sur will no longer briefly flash a system notification


Whatโ€™s Coming ๐Ÿšดโ€โ™€๏ธ

  • Vertical floating mode (the ability to stack your video bubbles vertically instead of horizontally)
  • Annotations (the ability to draw on the screen while someone else is in screen sharing mode)


Ping us at support@around.co if you run into any issues or just want to say bonjour. ๐Ÿ˜


Public Service Announcement: Don't forget to take a break today, whether that's going for a walk, enjoying nature, or being present. You deserve it. ๐ŸŒ๐Ÿง˜

Product Updates: May 2021 Edition ๐Ÿ”ฎ


Whatโ€™s New ๐Ÿšจ

  • Floating mode on top of fullscreen apps (Mac): By popular request, you can now use Aroundโ€™s floating mode on top of fullscreen apps in Mac.

  • Hide self-view 2.0: Based on your feedback regarding our recent hide self-view feature, weโ€™ve made some updates which will allow you to free up even more of your screen! With this new design for hiding self-view, weโ€™ve significantly reduced the size of your video circle and placed it off to the side, while still allowing you to see your own reactions and thoughts. Right-click on your video circle and select โ€œHide self viewโ€ or press โ€œVโ€ to try it out.

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  • CPU and battery life enhancements: Weโ€™ve made multiple improvements to our audio DSP, resulting in significant improvements to battery life and CPU utilization.

  • Alert sounds: You can now play a sound whenever someone joins a meeting. You can turn this on by going to your Lobby > Preferences > Audio > Play alert sounds.

  • Updated audio settings during a call: You can now choose your mic and speaker, disable audio output and see other audio settings in your current call. Just click the dropdown next to your mic icon.

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  • Updated camera settings during a call: By clicking on the dropdown next to the camera icon, you can choose a webcam, enable/disable camera framing/face zoom, hide your self-view or see more settings.

  • Redesigned preferences: Weโ€™ve completely updated our Preferences Menu in order to make all of our settings easier to find, which now includes:

    • Audio: Choose your mic and speaker input, as well as noise suppression level.

    • Video: You have the ability to choose your camera input, as well as disable camera framing/face zoom for all calls.

    • Account: Set your profile picture, personal information or add other sign-in methods.

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  • Improved video capturing performance on macOS

  • Add fire to your Campfire Mode: Whatโ€™s Campfire Mode without a proper campfire? If you have 5+ participants in Campfire Mode, now you can just click in the middle of the circular empty space a few times to ignite a roaring fire. The more you click, the bigger it grows. But keep in mind: just like a real fire, you have to keep feeding it or else itโ€™ll burn out. (You may have to click around a few times, but you'll find it eventually!) ๐Ÿ”ฅ

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Fixes ๐Ÿ›

Here are some of the highlights:

General

  • Made some improvements to app loading time
  • Anyone will now be able to delete a shared image (instead of just the owner)
  • Fixed bug where you couldnโ€™t see someoneโ€™s cursor while they were screensharing
  • Fixed issue where clicking hyperlinks in Notes didnโ€™t work
  • Continued improvements to one-click links
  • Fixed bugs with sizing of GIFs and thoughts

macOS

  • Fixed bug on older Macbooks where video background was extending outside of the video circle itself

Windows

  • Fixed issue on older Windows devices where app was stuck on the loading screen and would not open


Whatโ€™s Coming ๐Ÿšดโ€โ™€๏ธ

  • Audio-only voice channels
  • Mobile app for Android and iOS
  • Linux app
  • Vertical floating mode (the ability to stack your video bubbles vertically instead of horizontally)


Give us a shout at support@around.co if you run into any issues or just want to say hola. ๐Ÿ˜

Product Updates: March 2021 Edition ๐Ÿ”ฎ


What's New ๐Ÿšจ

  • Google Calendar integration: We've made it easier to schedule meetings in Around! With our Google Calendar integration, you can now add your Around link to Google Calendar events with one click. Choose between a one-off meeting link or a specific room (e.g. "Manik's Party Planning Committee"). You can install the integration from your Around lobby or the Google Workspace Marketplace.

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  • Hide self-view: We've added the ability to hide your own self-view, which can further reduce the fatigue associated with seeing yourself in video calls all the time. Turn this on by right-clicking on your own video > Hide self-view or by using the shortcut [V].

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  • Slack Team Room (beta): Instead of having to add members to your team room individually, we've auto-generated a room that anyone in your Slack workspace with the Around integration has access to (you'll recognize it by the little Slack icon). Great for daily stand-ups or all-hands!

For example, this is what it might look like for our friends at basement.studio ๐Ÿ‘‡

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Note: for existing teams, someone will have to reinstall the Slack extension and then the Slack team room will show up in everyone's lobby.

  • CPU performance improvements: We've made significant performance improvements, reducing CPU by as much as 20%. ๐Ÿƒโ€โ™€๏ธ

  • Pin specific people: Interested in keeping an eye on specific people's reactions while screensharing? You can do this by right-clicking on their bubble > Pin for me.

  • Mute for everyone: You can mute anyone on the call for everyone else by right-clicking on their bubble > Mute. ๐Ÿ”‡

  • Remove people: You can remove anyone from the call for everyone else by right-clicking on their bubble > Remove from meeting.


UX Improvements โœจ

  • Made icons for different statuses (e.g. microphone, EchoTerminator) less obtrusive
  • Easily show or hide the emoji/GIF panel when clicking on the text field
  • In-app notifications whenever someone joins/leaves a call or changes their mic/camera
  • End an ongoing meeting from the lobby as a room admin
  • Screensharing on Windows: We've added a yellow border so you know exactly what's being shared, in addition to removing the infamous black box that previously showed up as the Around overlay โ—ผ๏ธ๐Ÿ™…
  • Using Around with our Slack integration? Be the envy of all your teammates with a crystal ball as your call icon ๐Ÿ“žโ†’ ๐Ÿ”ฎ


Fixes ๐Ÿ›

So much bug stomping, so little space. Some highlights:

macOS

  • Admins and pro users can now download .dmg macOS builds for M1 and Intel chips for custom intracompany distribution
  • Fixed issue where rooms were not showing up in the lobby for some members
  • Fixed bug with requesting remote control twice in the same meeting
  • Native screensharing permissions dialogue is now properly shown over the information window
  • Fixed issue where 1-click universal links didn't show confirmation that they were activated

macOS and Windows

  • Fixed issue where users could not unmute in specific cases
  • Fixed issue where revoking Slack access affected the account
  • Major infrastructure improvements to permanently fix the root cause of two 30-min downtime periods


Drop us a line at support@around.co if you run into any issues or just want to say hi. ๐Ÿ˜

Now optimized for M1 Apple Silicon Macs!

 

New

 

 

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We're excited to share that Around for macOS now supports the M1 chip natively. We have observed a much smoother frame rate for video and animations, as well as about 30% less CPU usage in various situations.

All users on M1 devices should have received the update automatically. You can confirm you are running Around on the Apple architecture by opening the Activity Monitor and checking the "Architecture" column.

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Need to download the app manually? Click here. Note: Our installer automatically chooses the best architecture for you (Intel or Apple).

As always, keep us posted if you run into any issues! Drop us a line: support@around.co.

Shared Rooms: Add people as room members

 

New

 

 

The more the merrier! ๐Ÿ‘ฏโ€โ™€๏ธWith our newest feature, you can now add people as members of specific rooms. What does this mean?

  • All members will see the room in their lobby, as well as see who else is in the room at a glance
  • As a member, you automatically skip the waiting room and can add more members
  • If there's an ongoing meeting in any of the rooms, the dock icon badge on macOS will display how many people are in the meetings

As you can see below, this is useful in the case of recurring meetings (e.g. daily stand-ups) or encouraging more casual, spontaneous interactions (i.e. see who's in the "The Creative Lounge," or "The Design Studio," and say hello!).

As you can see below, the Around team only uses these rooms for the most productive of meetings. ๐ŸŽฎ๐Ÿ˜…

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How to add members to a room:

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  • From the list of users, you can either add someone you've chatted with in Around recently, or you can send them a special invite link to become a member. (Note: the room link and the invite link are two different links with different purposes.)
  • From a security standpoint, you also have the ability to revoke and refresh the invite link, which invalidates the previous one.

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Excited for you to give this a spin! Please send any feedback to feedback@around.co - we can't wait to hear it.

Choose your emoji skin tone

 

New

 

 

You can now adjust the skin tone for your hand emojis! Go to your Lobby > Preferences.

๐Ÿ™Œ๐Ÿ™Œ๐Ÿป๐Ÿ™Œ๐Ÿผ๐Ÿ™Œ๐Ÿฝ๐Ÿ™Œ๐Ÿพ๐Ÿ™Œ๐Ÿฟ

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GIFs and emojis are here!!! (+ few more treats)

 

New

 

 

๐ŸŽ Here is a little holiday gift from us!

CleanShot 2020-12-23 at 22.30.02.gif Yep, that's right! It's really happening!

To make posting gifs really fast, we have revamped the text field for sending messages and links. It's now directly available in the main UI and when you click in, it opens a panel with emojis and gifs. We have preselected a few emojis for you, but you can search way more of them just by typing, same for gifs. We can't wait to learn how you are going to use it. Have fun and keep us posted!

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Meet Now, Meet Later and Permanent Rooms

 

New

 

 

The new lobby provides you with everything you need:

  • Meet Now instantly jumps into a new meeting
  • Meet Later generates a new random meeting link (e.g. https://meet.around.co/NEW_MEETING_ID ) so you can simply paste it into your calendar when scheduling or send as a message
  • Rooms allow you to create permanent rooms, which are ideal for recurring meetings such as daily standups, design meetings, backlog grooming meetings, etc.
  • /around command in Slack now generates a new random meeting ID

When you sign up, your personal room is created by default. As you schedule more recurring meetings, you can simply create more rooms and define your nice looking URL for them.

You can also set the room to be Audio-first, at that point, the video is turned off by default, which we sometimes find great for team hangouts, when we work together over a few hours.

Around video calls

You can create as many rooms as you want. It's worth noting that there are many enhancements to the rooms we are now working on that will make them even more powerful and provide you with more privacy controls. Stay tuned!

Around video calls

Share Current Screen

 

New

 

 

This is a small one, but a good one. ๐Ÿ˜Ž

You can quickly share the whole screen without going through the dialog that lists all the windows to share.๐Ÿ‘‡

Around Share Screen