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Zoom 5.0 is out now: How to upgrade and what's new

Zoom 5.0 upgrades
(Image credit: Zoom)

New updates for Zoom's desktop client software and mobile apps are now available to download for Windows, Android (at least in theory) and Linux, with Mac and iOS coming soon after testing by Apple. 

The update, Zoom 5.0, is designed to address the Zoom privacy and security issues that have come up as demand for the video-conferencing service has exploded while people are staying and working at home. 

Zoom's improved security measures include stronger encryption, default passwords and a new hub for easy access to important security settings.

In the most significant upgrade, as Zoom announced on its blog, the service is now using the AES 256-bit GCM encryption standard. That still isn't end-to-end encryption — which Zoom had originally, and erroneously, claimed to have — but it will make meetings much more secure. 

Business users can also control which data center regions handle their video calls to address concerns about routing meetings through China. Many of these new features were already available in the Zoom web interface.

Zoom is also introducing several new password measures, which seem designed to stop Zoom-bombing by trolls who disrupt random meetings. 

Passwords will now be on by default for meetings hosted by Basic, single-license Pro, and K-12 customers. Waiting rooms will also be on by default, allowing hosts control over who enters the meeting. 

Business customers will be able to define the complexity of their meeting passwords. (length, alphanumeric, and special character requirements). Cloud recordings will also require passwords by default. 

And for easier, one-click control of all these features, Zoom 5.0 adds an icon to the host’s menu bar that goes to a security hub.

How to upgrade your Zoom software

If you're on Windows, Android, Linux or Mac you can upgrade to Zoom 5.0 today. You may be prompted to update the client or app when you open it, or you can manually get the update at Zoom's Download Center.

If you're on iOS, you'll have to wait a little longer for Apple to vet the update.

Zoom's increased security measures come at a time when the video conferencing service has experienced huge growth. Last week, the company announced it had surpassed 300 million daily Zoom meeting participants, up 50% from early April. 

Still, Zoom's privacy woes have made headlines and some businesses and government entities have banned its use. And competitors are swimming around like sharks:  Facebook recently announcing its new free video calling product, Messenger Rooms; Skype unveiled its free Meet Now service; and Google Duo just got a huge upgrade.