Video service Zoom aims to add real-time transcription in 30 languages and live translation in 12 languages by the end of next year. In addition, Zoom is increasingly positioning itself as a tool for hybrid work environments.
Zoom previously announced that live transcriptions – the automatic conversion of spoken word in online meetings to written subtitles – would be possible in English and free Zoom accounts.
Paying accounts will also be able to use real-time translation in 12 languages by the end of 2022 – no typing error, so that will have to wait a while. It is not yet known which languages are supported. However, Zoom did indicate in an online press conference that it will use machine learning to systematically improve the results: the knowledge that the company acquired with the German software company Kites.
Zoom is one of the technology winners from the corona crisis – were you already a customer before the outbreak of the pandemic? – and now wants to clearly profile itself as a tool that will continue to have a reason to exist even after a corona. As a result, a series of new features and innovations are coming, clearly intended to make the software more of a collaboration tool that bridges the gap between remote and office work.
Later this year, for example, the whiteboard functionality will be expanded and launched in beta as a Zoom app and an online tool that can be used outside of Zoom meetings. Whiteboard – thus becomes a full-fledged product next to video calls. Via a new widget, a Zoom user will also be able to quickly let the host of a consecutive meeting know that they are still in another meeting. There will also be a link to Horizon Workrooms: a collaboration with Facebook’s Oculus VR offering to also meet in virtual reality and use the Whiteboard.
Another example of Zoom’s commitment to hybrid work experience is the new ‘Zoom Rooms Smart Gallery’. This means that participants in a meeting room are visualized clearly and in the same way as participants at a distance. In other words, everyone comes into the picture individually. Also new later this year: a hot desk solution.
Through this function, employees will be able to reserve workplaces and spaces in their offices based on an interactive map of the office environment. This can be linked to Zoom Rooms or physical Zoom Phone devices but can also be entered easily: think of QR codes that you scan with the Zoom app to claim a workplace.
Zoom is also moving a bit more towards competitor Teams from Microsoft. Continuous Collaboration integrates Zoom with third-party software and allows users to share Zoom Meetings files, recordings, and chats with each other and other software. This means that you can find, share and further edit files and documents without leaving the Zoom client.
The American company is further and finally also planning to expand the events section of their software. It allows event organizers to host advanced, multi-day events with comprehensive features such as an event lobby, chat, networking and sponsorship opportunities, surveys, recording, and analytics.