When it comes to productivity, email and calendar applications are two of the most critical digital tools workers rely on. That's why Zoom is launching its own mail and calendar services. The videoconferencing platform is also providing direct access to popular third-party email and calendar tools.
With these new services, Zoom is one step closer to ensuring you never have to leave the Zoom app to get your work done.
"We're taking a big step forward to help users access the tools they need every day," Zoom's Cari Dick told reporters ahead of the Zoomtopia conference. "Wasted time switching between apps really adds up. So we're helping to eliminate this 'toggle tax' by bringing critical productivity tools right into the Zoom app, front and center."
Zoom Mail and Calendar Clients, as well as Zoom Mail and Calendar Services, are launching in beta this week. Users will be able to access their email and calendar services via icons on the top of the Zoom application, right alongside Phone, Meetings, Whiteboards and the other existing Zoom tools.
Zoom Mail and Calendar Services refers to the Zoom-hosted email and calendar service option, designed for small businesses that may not have dedicated IT services but still require private and secure communication channels. For emails sent directly between active Zoom Mail Service users, Zoom Mail Service provides end-to-end encryption. The Zoom Calendar Service allows teams to schedule and follow up on meetings. It also includes a helpful appointment booking feature.
The new email and calendar options are just a couple of the many platform updates Zoom is announcing at Zoomtopia. They come on top of the more than 1,500 platform improvements made last year.
"Zoom is so much more than just meetings," Joseph Chong, Zoom's head of product solutions and industry marketing, told reporters. "It's a comprehensive communications platform that's transforming the future of communications."
Zoom is also announcing a feature called Zoom Spots -- video-enabled persistent space within the platform, designed foster "connection and simplified communication" among distributed workforces, Dick explained.
"People miss serendipitous conversations" that occurred within an office, she explained. The new feature, coming in early 2023, aims to inspire those kinds of connections.
Zoom is also integrating Team Chat and In-Meeting Chat, so users can seamlessly flow between Team Chat and Meetings.
Some of the new features have more of an enterprise focus. For instance, the new Zoom Virtual Agent is a conversational AI and chatbot tool that helps businesses resolve customer issues. Meanwhile, the new Zoom IQ Virtual Coach is designed for salespeople -- it simulates a variety of selling situations, allowing salespeople to hone their pitch.