Google Meet is one of the preferred video conferencing services for many individuals working from home. Features such as multi-way audio, accompanying chat, noise-canceling filter, screen sharing, and integration with Google apps are some of the notable highlights behind its popularity that also double up in its favor to make it a worthy Zoom alternative.

google meet camera failed

However, that said, just like any other video conferencing software, Google Meet also has its share of problems that occasionally pose some inconvenience. If you’re on Windows 10, one particular issue that might trouble you the most is when Meet fails to access your device’s webcam.

Often displayed as a “camera failed” error, this issue is not just limited to the Windows operating system and can sometimes occur even on macOS.

Why is my Google Meet Camera Not Working?

When we wrote about the most popular Google Meet tips and tricks article, some people got back to us asking why their Google Meet camera was not working. Well, there are multiple reasons for the Google Meet camera failed issue, and in this article, we will take a look at all the possible reasons and solutions. But before that, it’s important to consider some basic things which result in the Google Meet camera not working:

  • To start with, check whether you are connected to the Internet and if the speed/connection is strong enough to run a Google Meet video call.
  • Check if the camera is working on other video conferencing solutions like Microsoft Teams, Zoom, etc.
  • Then try the good old all-in-one solution of restarting the device.
  • Finally, check if any other app/software (like Snap Camera) is using the camera of your device and shut them all.

These are some basic checks you need to do. If these do not fix your Google Meet camera failed issue, read along as we try to dig deep and address other possible reasons and fixes.

How to Fix Google Meet Camera Not Working Issue?

So if you’re faced with this error in Google Meet on your Mac or Windows computer, the following solutions should help you fix it.

1. Grant Google Meet Access to Your Webcam

One of the common reasons for the camera failed error on Google Meet is the blocked camera permission. Although you do need to grant camera access to Google Meet when you use it for the first time, it’s possible that you might accidentally deny/block its camera access permission if you’re dealing with multiple video conferencing services on your browser.

To ensure this isn’t the cause of your problem, check Google Meet’s camera permissions in the camera setting of your browser. Here’s how to do this on different browsers.

  • Chromium-based browsers (Brave/Google Chrome/Microsoft Edge/Vivaldi):
    1. Click the three-dot button on the top-right corner of the browser and select Settings.
    2. Go to Privacy & Security and select Site settings.
    3. From the list of available sites, tap on the arrow button next to
    4. Click on the dropdown arrow adjacent to Camera in the Permissions section and select Allow.enabling camera access on chrome
  • Firefox
    1. Hit the hamburger menu on the top-right corner of the browser and select Preferences.
    2. Tap on Privacy & Security from the left-hand pane.
    3. Scroll down on the right window to find Permissions.
    4. Click on the Settings button adjacent to Camera.
    5. Tap on and select Allow from the dropdown menu.
  • Safari
    1. Click the Safari menu and select Preferences.
    2. Tap on Websites to view permissions for different websites.
    3. Click on Camera in the left-hand pane.
    4. Tap on the dropdown arrow next to on the right window and select Allow from the sub-menu.enabling camera access in safari

2. Ensure that Your Webcam isn’t Used Elsewhere

If you’ve got multiple video calling apps running at once on your computer and Google Meet open in a browser tab, you might get the camera failed on Google Meet if it fails to access your webcam. This is the most common cause for camera problems on Meet or any other video calling app. It happens when one of the several video conferencing services in the background accesses your webcam and inadvertently blocks its access for the other apps.

Your best bet in such a situation is to identify if your device’s webcam is in use elsewhere. To do this, simply check for the LED status next to the webcam. If it’s turned on, it means that there’s an app on your device that’s accessing the camera, in which case, you’ll need to find this app and close it.

If it’s off, you might need to check for the same on your browser. Since in this case, if you have Google Meet open in one browser tab and some other video conferencing apps open in different tabs, Google Meet might still fail to access your camera if it’s in use by the other service.

To resolve this, close all the other tabs in your browser that might interfere with Meet’s webcam access.

3. Restart Your Web Browser

Web browsers like Google Chrome, Firefox, and Safari can often run into random glitches and interfere with certain system elements’ functioning. Google Meet is known to be a victim of such glitches that prevent it from accessing a device’s camera or microphone.

So if you see a black screen or the camera failed error, and none of the fixes so far work, close every single tab on your browser and restart it. If you’re on a Mac, you’ll need to quit the app — and not just exit it (with the x button) — to completely close it. On Google Chrome browser, you can also try going to chrome://settings/system and switch off “Use Hardware Acceleration when available” option. This will also force a restart of the Chrome browser.

Also, ensure that Google Chrome or Microsoft Edge or any browser you are using is updated to its latest version. You can enable automatic updates on these browsers so that they are always running the latest version.

4. Allow Camera in Windows Settings

Windows Settings provides a few options for allowing or disabling the device’s camera.

  • To access the Settings menu, press Win+I and navigate to Privacy > Camera.
  • You must check the following settings on your right side.

Check that the Camera access for this device setting is enabled. Alternately, click the Change button to modify the setting.

Check that the Allow desktop apps to access your camera setting is turned on. Otherwise, please turn it on by clicking the appropriate button.

5. Set Your Default Webcam

If you’re using Google Meet on a laptop that’s connected to an external or if you’re on a desktop and have multiple camera sources connected to it, it might create a scenario where Google Meet can’t easily identify your default webcam and may run into errors.

In such a situation, you need to explicitly set your default webcam so that Meet can easily identify your computer’s source feed. Follow the steps below to do this.

  1. Open Google Meet and click on the gear icon on the top-right to open settings.
  2. Select Video from the left-hand pane.
  3. Tap on the dropdown button below Camera on the right window and select your camera from the available options.selecting default camera for google meet

6. Update Webcam Driver

As we’ve already mentioned, the ‘Google Meet camera failed issue’ is a common sight on Windows. One of the potential causes for this is a buggy webcam driver that can prevent your webcam’s functioning and block its access to various apps.

However, before moving on to attempting a driver fix, if you’re using an external webcam, make sure that your system is recognizing it. In case it isn’t, try unplugging and replugging it into the computer.

To fix driver issues, you’ve got two methods. One, you can roll back the webcam driver to its previous version. Or two, update it to its latest available version.

If you choose the former, these are the steps you’ll need to follow.

  1. Press Win + X and select Device Manager.
  2. Click on the dropdown button beside Camera or Imaging devices (in the case of an external webcam) to expand its list.
  3. Right-click on your webcam’s driver name and select Properties.
  4. Go to the Driver tab and click Roll Back Driver.
    roll back webcam driver

In case the option is greyed out, or if you want to update your webcam’s driver to the newest version, use the following steps.

  1. Press Win + X and select Device Manager.
  2. Tap the dropdown button next to Camera or Imaging devices (in the case of an external webcam) to view your webcam driver.
  3. Right-click on your webcam driver and select Properties.
  4.  Tap on the Driver tab and click on Update Driver.
  5. Choose either option between Search automatically for driver or Browse my computer for driver to search for the latest driver.

    update webcam driver

If you choose the former, the latest driver is fetched online, so you’ll need to be connected to the internet. Alternatively, if you prefer the latter method, you need to navigate to the folder where you’ve downloaded the latest driver for your webcam and select it.

Successfully Restoring Google Meet’s Camera Access

Using the fixes above, you should be able to fix the camera failed issue in Google Meet on your Mac or PC and subsequently should be able to use it without any troubles.

However, for some reason, if these fixes don’t work in your favor, you should check to see if your webcam is actually functional. You can do this by trying it out with some other video conferencing service. If it fails to work with other apps, too, it could probably be a hardware issue.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. How to troubleshoot Google Camera not found on phones?

In case you are using Google Meet on your iPhone or Android phone and still facing Google Meet Camera failed issues, then try the following steps:

  • Open the Google Meet app
  • Click on the video camera icon
  • You can alternate between the front and rear camera by clicking on the Change Camera icon on the top right.
  • If you still have issues, ensure you have a strong WiFI or mobile data connection.
  • Restart your device.
  • Finally, try clearing cache of the Google Meet app.

Have any more questions? Let us know via the comments section below.

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