Technology

Zoom is coming for Microsoft’s territory with email and calendar services

With the recent release of Zoom Team Chat, the company already pushed into Slack and Microsoft Teams territories, and now the race for a complete hybrid work solution that includes instant communications, video, and email is on. Zoom is more closely taking on Microsoft 365 (formally Office 365) in particular by letting companies choose to connect to their existing email service or, if they lack an IT department, host it for them.

Small businesses surviving through the pandemic may have a need to migrate their outdated email servers to a more secure platform, especially if they lack the IT personnel to maintain them. Now, Zoom Mail and Calendar services are another solution businesses can strongly consider vs. products like Microsoft 365 and Google Workspace — after all, they are probably using Zoom meetings anyway.

Calendar integration makes joining Zoom meetings or viewing recordings easier without the hassle of links.
Image: Zoom

In a company blog, Zoom head of product Joseph Chong writes that Zoom mail is end-to-end encrypted within Zoom Mail Service users. “The Zoom Mail and Calendar Services (beta) are targeted at small-to medium-business customers who particularly value email privacy,” Chong wrote. The all-in-one solution is designed to keep users from needing to switch apps when group messaging and starting a video meeting with the team or responding to a client’s email.

Calendars inside of Zoom help get meetings started easier by not needing to fumble Zoom links or being able to see who is already in the room before joining in. You can also see what meetings are completed and see a recording link without waiting for staff to complete upload and manually send it to your team.

The Zoom meeting is never really over with the new Zoom Spots virtual co-working space.

The Zoom meeting is never really over with the new Zoom Spots virtual co-working space.
Image: Zoom

Zoom shared some other new features at its event as well. One is called Zoom Spots, which attempts to “bring the fluid interactions of in-person work” by keeping you and your teammates’ cameras on in a virtual co-working space. Zoom Spots will be available in early 2023.

Zoom also has a new AI-powered chatbot called Zoom Virtual Agent that can resolve customer problems and help businesses reduce call volumes to human agents. It’ll be available in 2023.

Update 3:23PM ET: Added new details of ‘@zmail.com’ domain and supported calendar integrations with Microsoft and Google.

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