Zoom has unveiled its plan to roll out ads to free users of its video conferencing software in an effort to support investment and continue to provide free access to its platform.
As employees around the world switched to working from home last year, the video conferencing service experienced exponential growth as its user base grew from primarily business users to a large number of individual users.
But with organizations implementing hybrid work policies, more employees return to the office and rely less on video calls during the day. While the age of Zoom may not be over yet, the company is changing its tactics when it comes to free users.
It is also worth noting that there is still a 40-minute limit on the length of group calls to free Zoom users, which may entice some people to upgrade to its paid plans.
Pilot advertising program
In a new blog post, Zoom’s Chief Marketing Officer, Janine Pelosi, explained that the company is rolling out a pilot ad program targeted at its free Basic users.
As part of the new program, ads will be rolled out for free users running Zoom’s video conferencing software in a browser when they end their meeting. Only free users in certain countries will see these ads if they attend meetings hosted by other Basic users, but the company has not specified which countries will be part of its pilot advertising program.
Going forward, free users will see a banner add-on on the Zoom website after concluding a meeting with a link above the ad recommending that they “upgrade to remove ads”. Pelosi also pointed out that the company will not use meeting, webinar or announcement content, including audio, video files and messages, for marketing, promotional or third-party advertising purposes.
While Zoom brings ads to its platform for free users of its service, the company does so in a way that is not intrusive and is unlikely to disrupt the quality of their meetings.
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