The Year in Review: Zoom Feature & Product Highlights
In 2020, the world changed — and how we communicate and collaborate changed, too. We’re proud to have helped so many people connect virtually to get business done, continue learning when schools were closed, seek care via telehealth, get married, and stay in touch with family and friends.
We released more than 400 features and announced several new offerings in 2020 to better serve your personal and business communication needs.
Some of these highlights include:
- Zoom Apps was announced, which will bring best-of-breed apps directly into the Zoom experience for use before, during, and after your meetings to enable seamless collaboration and meeting management, and improve engagement
- Zoom for Home, allowing remote workers to outfit their home workspaces with devices that enable seamless communication and collaboration on Zoom
- OnZoom, a virtual events marketplace built to host, discover & attend immersive online experiences
- Zoom 5.0, with 256-bit AES-GCM encryption for all meetings and other advanced security enhancements and host controls
- End-to-end encryption, which gives users the ability to host meetings where nobody except each participant – not even Zoom’s servers – has access to the encryption keys being used to encrypt the meeting in transit.
Those last two points were core to another high-priority focus area for us: security. As global usage rapidly increased, we devoted all of our engineering resources to increasing security for all our users. Our product and engineering teams focused on security enhancements like adding the Security icon for comprehensive in-meeting controls, the “Report a User” function, and more granular data routing options.
We continue to prioritize platform and user security and are committed to being transparent with our actions and policies.
Here are just a few other notable updates we made to our portfolio of products:
We’ve added many new features and additional functionality to our core video communications solution to help our users communicate and collaborate seamlessly over video during these trying times. Some of our most prominent features include spotlighting and multi-pinning video feeds, co-host capabilities for managing Breakout Rooms, the ability to use slides as a virtual background, High-Fidelity Music Mode, and Filters, which give our users the freedom to create a more user-friendly, engaging meeting experience. In-meeting security controls, a new security settings section, and centralized controls allow secure meetings at scale.
These features have enabled new ways of meeting and communicating in the classroom, across the enterprise, in healthcare settings, and more. Educators are creating more immersive virtual learning experiences and enhancing the quality of their music lessons, while companies like Capital One relied on Zoom to quickly transition to a new way of working from home.
We’ve rapidly scaled up features and functionality for Zoom Phone, the cloud telephony component of our unified communications platform. Launched in January 2019, Zoom Phone supports service in 44 countries and territories, and we’re continuing to add more countries on a regular basis! This rapid Zoom Phone innovation is just one reason Gartner named Zoom a Leader in the 2020 Magic Quadrant for UCaaS in our first year of eligibility.
Some notable updates to Zoom Phone from the past year include Nomadic E911, expanded contact center integration, Slack integration, SMS, and other enterprise features like transfer to meeting, barge-in, monitor, whisper, and takeover that help improve productivity and keep your business connected, no matter where your teams are. Organizations like UDG Healthcare, Fundation, and Dixon Hughes Goodman leveraged Zoom Phone during the pandemic to give their employees access to the business phone features they need from home.
Our workspaces took on all shapes and sizes as the world pivoted to remote and hybrid work and learning. In addition to our Zoom for Home offerings and device expansion, we introduced our Hardware as a Service program and added more capabilities to engage, including the ability to see 49 video participants in Gallery View and assign Zoom Rooms to Breakout Rooms.
We also announced a number of cool new features to make it easier to return to the office. Check out some of those here:
Our webinar platform became an essential tool for event organizers that had to move their in-person events online in 2020, enabling them to manage large audiences more effectively. We’ve added Gallery View, native post-webinar surveys, enhanced scheduling options, and a number of Q&A features to improve engagement with attendees. Many of these new features have been instrumental for organizations that used Zoom Webinars for virtual events large and small this year — from the NBA and WNBA to our own Zoomtopia user conference.
Zoom Chat is free with a Zoom Meetings license and streamlines workspace collaboration by allowing users to instantly message groups or individuals inside and even outside their organization. We’ve added a ton of useful features to our Zoom Chat solution to drive fast and effective communication, including the ability to record a voice message on desktop, pin important messages, and share files from different sources, like SharePoint. We’ve also made things easier for administrators with centralized chat channel management, external participant controls, and removing contacts permanently — all from the admin portal.
Zoom App Marketplace
The Zoom App Marketplace, the leading source for discovering best-of-breed apps that enable seamless collaboration with Zoom, surpassed 1,000 apps and bots! With integrations for popular applications spanning scheduling, chat, marketing ops, project management, CRM, sales analytics & support, customer service, education, finance, healthcare, and other use cases, check out the Zoom App Marketplace to enhance and extend your business operations.
Zoom Video SDK
Our new video software development kit (SDK) allows developers to build powerful desktop and mobile applications with fully customizable user interfaces on top of the Zoom platform. With access to raw video and audio data plus other in-demand interactive Zoom features, developers can create incredible experiences for a variety of use cases including peer-to-peer chat applications, or create custom real-time video applications for retail or gaming with live streaming and screen sharing functionality.
Additional enhancements & news
We made a number of upgrades across our entire platform to enhance functionality and improve reliability, including increasing the number of co-located data centers globally to 19 and releasing an enhanced Business Associate Agreement (BAA) for our customers with a Zoom for Healthcare license.
Zoom for Government, a FedRAMP authorized platform, helped many federal, state, and local agencies, federal systems integrators, and contractors support continuity of operations and mission-effectiveness during the pandemic, as well as positioned them for their current and future IT modernization journey.
Additionally, we launched our Zoom Cares philanthropic initiative, brought our annual Zoomtopia 2020 user conference online for the first time to thousands of users around the world, and hosted our first Zoom Summer Academy to provide training and resources to educators teaching remotely. (Check out our Zoom for Education highlights from this past year.)
As we wrap up 2020 and prepare to welcome a new year, we want to express our gratitude to everyone using Zoom to connect and collaborate. We look forward to serving you in 2021 and beyond!
Editor’s note: This blog post was edited on Aug. 3, 2021, to include the most up-to-date information on Zoom encryption.