Restrictions to Basic Accounts

I’ve searched Zoom documentation and user experiences to compile this set of know restrictions to Basic/Free/Unlicensed accounts.

I’m going to continue to research these limitations, and will continue to maintain this on the GoodClix web site.  One of the things I’m somewhat unhappy about with Zoom is their lack of transparency in some cases, and not having a single page where all of the restrictions of a Basic account are clearly laid out on a Zoom site is one of my pet peeves.

Here are some limitations, along with an explanation of some things which do not limit a Basic account. Most of these relate to a Basic user’s meetings.

  • There is a 40 minute meeting duration for meetings owned by a Basic user, regardless of how many attendees there are, and what their Licensed status is. (There used to be exceptions for 1 person meetings and 1-on-1 meetings, but these are now also restricted to 40 minutes, as of about May 2022.)
  • There is no limit on how long a Basic user can attend anyone else’s meeting.
  • There is now a 10 minute waiting period before starting a new meeting. (This restriction was rolled out in early 2023.)
  • No Cloud Storage for a Basic account, and therefore only Local recording (and only on desktop; local recording isn’t possible on non-desktop devices)
  • No telephone dial-in to their meetings (I think they can dial in to Licensed user meetings if enabled, but nobody can dial in to a Basic user’s meetings)
  • Basic account meetings can’t have assigned Co-Hosts in-meeting or Alt-Hosts when scheduling
  • Basic account are not permitted to live-stream, do not have access to reporting, and no access to Polls or Quizzes in their meetings.

There are a variety of settings that affect the Basic account users outside of their own meetings:

  • Basic users can’t be designated as an Alt Host, even if they are on the same account as the meeting’s owner (that is, a Licensed user can’t designate a Basic/unlicensed user as an Alt-Hot to a meeting; they can, however, designate a Basic user participant as a Co-Host once the meeting starts)
  • A Basic user can’t assign or be assigned to Scheduling Privilege
  • A Basic user has no access to submitting a Support Ticket (there is an exception for issues in the Billing and Account Management category), and bas no access to Live chat support, Live phone support, or Meet with an agent on video
  • Virtually all add-ons are disabled, including Large Meetings, Cloud Storage, Webinars, Translated Captions, etc.


Occasionally I find something that is documented as a restriction which does not actually appear to be true or enforced, and occasionally I’ll find something that Zoom documentation says is not restricted that appears to be restricted during testing. I list those items here.

  • The Pricing page ( indicates that Original Sound for Musicians (OSM) is not available for Basic users.  In testing whether this applies to a Basic user attending a Licensed Meeting or whether it applied only to any user in a Basic meeting, I found that I was able to enable OSM in both situations for a Basic user.  I’ve asked Zoom to make the change to the documentation via the Zoom Community Team Chat channel.