Zoom Video Communications has unveiled two new products: a platform for live events and a marketplace for third-party applications that can be brought right into the Zoom meeting environment.
OnZoom, a new events platform, lets users browse, schedule, create and host live events. OnZoom was created with enterprises, small businesses, and consumers in mind, Wei Li, head of platform and AI, told press ahead of the company’s Zoomtopia‘s 2020 virtual event.
Li said that Zoom has been “very much inspired” by the ways many businesses adapted to the shutdowns related to COVID-19 with virtual events and a variety different kinds of meetings, which led to the creation of the new platform.
“Businesses, entrepreneurs, and organizations of all sizes have had to find any way to stay on-course during COVID-19 and continue to provide services to their customers. Many turned to Zoom,” she said. ”We realized that [users] are forced to manage many different tools to market and schedule their events, engage with attendees and collect payments … Our users want us to address these challenges, and we listened.”
Using the secure OnZoom platform, business users and consumers can schedule, host, and monetize one-time events, event series, and drop-ins for up to 1,000 attendees, depending on the Zoom Meeting license. Users can list and sell tickets for their events and share and promote public events via email and social media, Zoom said.
Zoom users of both free and enterprise accounts can log in to their OnZoom account, search the directory of public events and purchase tickets online via PayPal and major credit cards; gift OnZoom tickets to other users; and donate to nonprofit organizations through events with active fundraisers, which is powered by Pledgeling, a free and enterprise fundraising platform. Users can join events, and use the calendar feature to schedule, save, or favorite an upcoming event, Zoom said.
There are no additional platform fees attached to OnZoom for hosts or attendees, and at least initially, Zoom won‘t be taking a cut of any event, Li said.
When asked if OnZoom would be made be available through Zoom's channel partners, Li said: “we‘re definitely looking into that – and how we can do it in a more scaled way.”
OnZoom is now available for public beta for U.S. based customers with both free and paid accounts on OnZoom.com The platform will be rolled out internationally in 2021, Zoom said.
Zapps is the new place for applications that can be used to pull up and launch a variety of apps, including collaboration, productivity, education, within the Zoom platform.
Zoom said that over 35 launch partners have worked with the company to build their “Zapps” right into Zoom, including collaboration and file sharing tools such as Asana, Box, Dropbox, and Slack, marketing, sales, and customer service tools including Hubspot, Salesforce, ServiceNow, Slack, SurveyMonkey, Zendesk, and game-based learning platform Kahoot.
Unlike Zoom‘s previous integrations with third-party platforms, Zapps can be launched from right inside a Zoom meeting, chat, webinar, phone calls. Zapps is meant to support all kinds of meeting workflows and create more engaging meetings, said Ross Mayfield, product lead, Integrations at Zoom.
“[We are] bringing an app store into the meeting experience so you can add and use [apps] on the fly,” he said. ”You can send Zapps to other Zoom users to engage them in a specific feature.”
Users can search and add approved Zapps to be integrated directly into their paid or free Zoom accounts, the company said. By the end of this year or early next year, developers will also be able to take advantage of Zoom‘s open APIs to create and build their own Zapps that can be submitted to Zoom for testing, approval, hosting, and publishing, Mayfield said.
“I believe that Zapps is going to transform [Software as a Service] SaaS,” he said. ”It‘s a new model of collaborative app distribution, adoption and engagement, and we are going to see the rise of Zoom startups.”
Zapps is now in public beta for U.S.-based users. According to Mayfield, Zoom‘s plan is to roll Zapps out to its international users, but the company has not yet revealed a release date.