Will The New Events And App Marketplace Keep Zoom Relevant?

After an unusual and spectacular 2020, an inevitable if maybe unfair question hovers over Zoom‘s head: Will it be able to maintain the rate of growth of the last year?

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The public has been waiting for the answer. Now the massively popular video conferencing tool offers two: Zoom Events and the Zoom Marketplace.

What are they? What can you expect from them? Do they have a place in 2021’s fiercely competitive live online space? Let’s take a look at the facts.

Zoom Events: Promote, host and monetize online experiences

On July, Zoom launched the previously announced platforms. A previous announcement, OnZoom, was an events marketplace. Now OnZoom will be part of the Zoom Events larger offering, which adds event hubs with multiple sessions, global chat and other virtual conference goodies.

With Zoom Events, users will be able to anticipate multi-day, multi-session event capabilities in the fall of this year.

Zoom Events plans start at $690 USD per year for up to 500 event attendees.

Zoom App Marketplace: Enhance your standard experience

Are you looking to get your hands on Zoom’s take on the App Store? Arm yourself with a lot of patience. To start using any app, make sure you and everyone in your meeting are running the latest desktop version —Zoom on mobile does not support Apps—, and you all have administrator permissions so that they can pre-approve and then approve and install the app. Then you might be required or strongly encouraged to create an account at the app maker’s page.

We had high hopes. But the Kahoot! experience within Zoom, the first one we tried, leaves a lot to be desired. When you open Kahoot! on Zoom’s right or pop-up panel, the host still needs to give you the access code. Then they also need to share screen the Kahoot! dashboard from their web browser.

Slightly better impressions came from Miro, Mentimeter and BuildBetter. Setting aside the fact that Zoom’s app is pretty much an embedded web browser with reduced functionality, these apps might in some circumstances make the live video experience a bit less dreadful.

  • Miro adds multi-user whiteboard capabilities with templates.
  • Mentimeter offers real-time feedback and answer aggregation, for surveys or quizzes.
  • BuildBetter lets you interview people using templates.

Will they pass muster?

If Events and Marketplace are Zoom’s way to ensure a skyrocketing pace of growth, then hard times are ahead. The reality is that these announcements are features —some impressive, some curious, some long-awaited— or promising ideas at best.

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