About five years ago, Zoom already established itself as a reliable platform for collaboration. Companies that were testing the waters of hybrid work would use Zoom to create hybrid work meetings. That is when I started to use Zoom, at least, as I was a part of those Zoom meetings five years ago, working in the office and being able to communicate with coworkers from around the U.S.
Then, a little something called the COVID-19 pandemic happened, and Zoom boomed. As the pandemic forced lockdowns, the platform enabled individuals and organizations to stay in touch and collaborate from different locations worldwide.
Fast-forward to 2023 and Zoom has generated revenues of over $4 billion in the fiscal year 2023, according to Statista. Yeah, Zoom is absolutely a household name when it comes to being an all-in-one intelligent collaboration platform. But that said, even household names need to keep innovating to stay ahead of other would-be household-name competitors.
That is why Zoom started to introduce generative AI within its platform. Zoom’s goal is to invest in AI-driven innovation that enhances user experience and productivity while prioritizing trust, safety and privacy. Since Zoom introduced generative AI in early June, thousands of companies have benefited from free trials of Team Chat compose and meeting summary.
The Zoom Team Chat compose feature uses generative AI to help users draft messages. The feature uses context from the conversation to draft messages. Zoom IQ Meeting Summary is a feature that allows meeting hosts to generate a meeting summary using AI technology. The summary is automatically sent to participants after the meeting ends. The summary can be sent via Zoom Team Chat or email.
And beginning this fall, Zoom will expand its generative AI offering across its platform with the launch of AI Companion, at no additional cost (with paid Zoom user accounts).
AI Companion simplifies collaboration and boosts productivity by automating tasks and minimizing distractions, promoting more efficient teamwork. It deploys a range of real-time AI capabilities, with ongoing updates in the pipeline.
Within Zoom Meetings, users can expedite their review of meeting recordings via highlights and smart chapters, as well as access summaries and next steps to catch up on missed meetings. Attendees, if enabled by the host, can discreetly submit questions during meetings via the AI Companion side panel, receiving AI-generated answers without disrupting the proceedings.
For post-meeting work, hosts receive automated summaries for sharing, allowing team members in different time zones to catch up asynchronously. Upcoming features include real-time feedback on meeting presence and coaching on conversational and presentation skills, slated for spring 2024.
Zoom Team Chat becomes more streamlined with AI Companion. Users can draft messages based on contextual cues and save time on composing responses. Future enhancements include generative AI summarization for lengthy chat threads and the ability to auto-complete sentences and schedule meetings directly from a chat, set to roll out in early 2024.
AI Companion extends its support to Zoom Whiteboard users, aiding in idea generation and categorization. By spring 2024, users can leverage AI to generate images and populate whiteboard templates with their content.
Zoom Mail users will soon receive draft email suggestions (early fall). In spring 2024, they can integrate meeting summaries into Zoom Notes and summarize SMS threads and calls with Zoom Phone.
Additionally, a conversational interface for AI Companion, anticipated in spring 2024, will facilitate context-aware interactions across the Zoom platform. Users can seek assistance with pre-meeting preparation, real-time support during meetings and post-meeting tasks, drawing insights from meetings, chats, whiteboards, emails, documents and select third-party apps, with user consent. This interface empowers users to efficiently manage tasks and workflows across the Zoom ecosystem, enhancing productivity and collaboration.
The long story short? Zoom AI Companion delivers powerful, real-time digital assistant capabilities to help users improve productivity and work together more effectively.
“We are transcending the hype in generative AI by delivering tangible products and disrupting the industry’s pricing model, making it easy for businesses and people like you and me to leverage generative AI’s full benefits in our day-to-day work,” said Smita Hashim, Chief Product Officer at Zoom. “We were founded on doing what’s right for our customers, and we firmly believe that offering Zoom AI Companion at no additional cost to our paid Zoom user accounts delivers tremendous value as we all navigate the challenges facing us today."
Starting now, users can interact with AI Companion through a side panel in Meetings, with this functionality expanding across the Zoom platform by spring 2024 as new capabilities are introduced.
Be part of the discussion about the latest trends and developments in the Generative AI space at Generative AI Expo, taking place February 13-15, 2024, in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Generative AI Expo, part of the #TECHSUPERSHOW, discusses the evolution of GenAI and feature conversations focused on the potential for GenAI across industries and how the technology is already being used to create new opportunities for businesses to improve operations, enhance customer experiences, and create new growth opportunities.
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