With as many people as possible now sequestered in their homes, many are hastily adopting video chat software like Zoom for all their work, social and family gatherings. If you're new to Zoom, you might not have examined the full possibilities of the background features. With a few easy clicks, you could be sitting in an iconic TV set for your next remote happy hour.
Zoom has rushed to the forefront of the video chat race during the coronavirus pandemic. The program runs well, accommodates many people at once and works on mobile and desktop devices. However, many users' real favorite feature is the backgrounds. Zoom can make it look like you're calling in from just about anywhere, with no need for a green screen or other extras.
The process is simple. From the app, you simply click on your profile picture, then click on settings. In the menu bar, click on the "Virtual Background" tab. Now, you can either select one of the defaults provided by Zoom, or upload your own to use.
Clearly, the sky is the limit with this feature, but one option that is rising in popularity is to use a familiar TV show set. With a little digging, you can call into your conference call or your family dinner from Friends' Central Perk, Frasier's living room or Community's library study room. Here are some of the post popular TV sets to use in your next Zoom call.
Finally, you can take a seat on one of those clearly comfy couches in the beloved fictional Manhattan coffee shop Central Perk. If you've always wanted to sit down and chat with Ross, Rachel, Joey, Phoebe, Monica and Chandler, here is your chance. (Over-sized mug sold separately.)
'It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia'
Let your friends know you're in a scheming mood by setting yourself up in Philadelphia's Paddy's Pub. It might not be ideal for work call or business meetings — unless you intend on calling in "The Warthog."
Set the mood for a pithy family confrontation by making Frasier's living room the backdrop of your next call. Some versions of the set even include the Seattle skyline out the window, giving your home a real metropolitan look.
'The Price is Right'
Of course, don't limit yourself to fake homes or businesses — you can give your call some real flair with a game show set like The Price is Right. Let your colleagues know you're on the verge of a big win by having that wheel just over your shoulder, ready to spin.
Game of Thrones
If you want to come off authoritative, you could always position yourself on Game of Thrones' Iron Throne for your next meeting. Where better to share the latest news on a project than from a seat forged from the blades of a thousand conquered enemies?
The set from the original Roseanne is now available in high-resolution thanks to The Conners. Seat yourself at the kitchen table or on the tired old sofa for a no-nonsense chat with your family.
Putting yourself in the Tanner family home for a Zoom chat may create a much-needed sense of urgency, as anyone could be running through at any moment. Whether it's the classic Full House look or a newer Fuller House set, this may be the does of excitement you need during quarantine.
You don't even need to limit your calls to real-life locations — you can sit on one of the squeaky red stools at Bob's Burgers for your next video conference. Sit beside Teddy and be sure to pick a photo where you like the special of the day, just make sure you aren't the victim of Louise's next prank while you're trying to chat with your loved ones.
If you're calling someone for a dramatic confrontation, where better to set it than the Degrassi Community School? This way you can get that long-lost feeling of rubbing elbows with other people in a public place, and if things get too real, you'll be glad to leave it behind and go back into self-isolation.
Finally, if you need the stakes to be really high, a reality TV backdrop like Survivor is the best way to set the tone. Keep your friends or family on their toes, thinking that they might be the one sent packing this week while you're on the phone. It might not be much, but we all need to take what we can get in these isolated times.