Meetings and webinars comparison

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The Meeting and Webinar platforms offer similar features and functionality but have some key differences.

Meetings are designed to be a collaborative event with all participants being able to screen share, turn on their video and audio, and see who else is in attendance.

Webinars are designed so that the host and any designated panelists can share their video, audio and screen. The host can also unmute attendees. Webinars allow view-only attendees, who have the ability to interact via Q&A, Chat, and answering polling questions. Webinar attendees can't rename themselves. 

This article covers:

Meetings versus webinars

  Meeting Webinar
Description Zoom meetings are ideal for hosting more interactive sessions where you’ll want to have lots of audience participation or break your session into smaller groups. Think of webinars like a virtual lecture hall or auditorium. Webinars are ideal for large audiences or events that are open to the public. Typically, webinar attendees do not interact with one another. Though Zoom provides options for you to get more social with your attendees, your average webinar has one or a few people speaking to an audience.
Best used for Small to large groups (2+ participants) for:
  • Customer-facing meetings
  • Sales meetings
  • Training sessions
Large events and public broadcasts (50+ attendees) such as:
  • Town halls
  • Quarterly updates
  • Educational lectures
Typically used by
  • General employees
  • Training groups
  • Event hosts
  • SVPs and C-Suite
Cost Free and Paid subscription options available. Paid Add-on, available to Pro or higher subscriptions.

Meeting and webinar feature comparison

Feature Meeting Webinar
Participant roles

Learn more about meeting roles.

Learn more about webinar roles.

Audio sharing
  • All participants can mute/unmute their own audio
  • Host can mute/request to unmute participants
  • The host can set all participants to mute upon entry
  • Only the host and panelists can mute/unmute their own audio
  • Attendees join in listen-only mode*
  • The host can unmute one or more attendees
Video sharing All participants Hosts and panelists
Screen sharing
Capacity Up to 100 with free license, up to 1,000 depending on plan and large meeting add-on. Ranging between 500-50,000 participants, depending on the license.
Participants list Visible to all participants Visible to host and panelists
Email reminders N/A If registration is enabled
Chat In-meeting chat Webinar chat
Reactions Meeting reactions Webinar reactions
Q&A Meeting Q and A Webinar Q and A
File transfer
Polling Polling for meetings Polling for webinars
Surveys Surveys for meetings Surveys for webinars
Livestream Facebook, Twitch, YouTube, Workplace from Meta, Custom Streaming Service Facebook, Twitch, YouTube, Workplace from Meta, Custom Streaming Service
Registration Registration for meetings Registration for webinars
Closed captioning
Breakout rooms Breakout rooms for meetings Breakout rooms for webinars
Practice session N/A
Waiting room N/A
PayPal integration N/A
Require password to join
International dial-in numbers

*Note: If the host or co-host enables Allow to talk for an attendee, they will be able to enable their microphone, as well as mute and unmute themselves.

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