Future of Work News

Zoom Announces New Features, Including Avatars and Improved Ways to Stay Organized


Videotelephony and meeting platform Zoom announced new features in the form of human avatars, Zoom Meeting templates, threaded messages, message reaction options, and more.

If users so wish, the avatars can be found in their collection of filters, allowing for new aesthetic customization. According to a recent Zoom blog post, these are intended to give meetings a bit more of an easygoing, upbeat vibe.

"With numerous personalization combinations,” a Zoom representative wrote, “you can display the 'virtual you' in a way that is original and fun! Avatars mirror your movements and facial expressions, allowing you to present yourself dynamically without needing to be on video and providing more engaging alternatives to static profile pictures to inject more fun and energy into your meetings.”

Zoom joining this avatar competition makes sense; recently, Microsoft introduced its own animated avatars to Microsoft Teams, and Meta brought Facebook’s bitmoji-style avatars to WhatsApp. Zoom said that they will expand with tools for changing facial details and hairstyles, as well.

In addition to the avatars themselves, Zoom also revealed the aforementioned Zoom Meeting templates and soon-to-arrive threaded messages and message reaction options.

With templates, users can create and save custom template designs which apply automatically the settings they need (in lieu of repeatedly scouring menus and toggling settings).

Threaded messages and message reactions will allow Zoom participants to create separate threads for in-meeting conversations in order to not clutter one singular chat.

And finally, Zoom will implement a Q&A feature to allow meetings’ hosts to better organize attendees’ queries, as opposed to sifting through less-organized chats to ensure all questions have been duly addressed.

While these aren’t extraordinarily meta-morphic (pun intended) changes, it’s clear that Zoom is stepping up to the plate to deliver satisfying, user-tailored features to set itself apart.

Edited by Greg Tavarez

Future of Work Contributor

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