Zoom launches purpose built appliances for Zoom Room conferencing system

According to Zoom, the appliances will be the first custom-developed hardware that lets users gather room intelligence and analytics.

Cloud video conferencing company Zoom on Tuesday announced a series of new products and features, as well as key partnerships and integrations that aim to expand its ecosystem on both the hardware and software fronts. 

Key releases include the launch of purpose-built appliances for its Zoom Rooms conference room system. According to Zoom, the appliances will be the first custom-developed hardware that lets users gather room intelligence and analytics, and will simplify installation and management of large-scale conference room deployments. 

Initial hardware partners include Poly, Neat, and DTEN.

"Zoom Rooms appliances offer a rich compute platform that can evolve with Zoom's pace of innovation, allowing video to scale to more use cases, environments, and locations than ever before possible," the company said in a press release.

Other announcements include new AI-based capabilities that aim to help customers manage and better understand user participation, as well as improve productivity and meeting experiences in both Zoom Rooms and Zoom Meetings.

These include simultaneous real-time interpretation in multiple languages for Zoom Meetings, as well as voice note taking and auto-generated meeting timelines for Zoom Meetings. Zoom also improved its interoperability with Microsoft Teams -- with ability start and schedule Zoom meetings from the Teams interface with a one click -- and expanded its links to Salesforce and ServiceNow.

Zoom also announced new contact center partners for Zoom Phone -- such as Genesys, InContact, and Talkdesk -- as well as  enhancements to Zoom Phone, including VDI support and integrations to improve security for enterprise users.

"Deploy intelligent Zoom Rooms quickly on purpose-built appliances, use Zoom Phone in new geographies and new use cases, and streamline laborious tasks such as creating and sharing meeting notes," said Oded Gal, chief product officer for Zoom. "It's all designed to remove friction and replace it with empowering communications experiences, so you can do more."

Currently, Zoom has over 66,300 customers with greater than 10 full-time-employees and claims to host more than 42 billion annualized meeting minutes. Its video conferencing competitors include tech titans like Microsoft, Cisco, and Google, while plenty of other hungry competitors are vying for attention in the collaboration space.

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