Video calls have surged on all messaging platforms including WhatsApp, Messenger, and Google Hangouts, but during this lockdown period Zoom has become a star.
Because it allows as many as 100 people simultaneously attend a video-conference, with 40 minutes free and then charging for premium accounts that provide more time and features for US$15 (RM65) monthly.
As people around the world stay home due to coronavirus risk, Zoom has become a go-to service from remote education, exercise classes, poker games, church services or even a happy hour celebrations.
Couples have gotten married in “zoomed” ceremonies. Birthdays have been celebrated. Funerals have been virtually attended.
“It’s really easy to use, and free; that’s nice,” said US school teacher Justin Minkel, who instructs students remotely using Zoom. “Just click a link.”
Home chaos such as dogs barking or outbursts from siblings can be disruptive, but Minkel cures that by “muting” students’ microphones until he needs to hear them.
According to Eric Yuan, founder of Zoom, the number of people taking part in Zoom meetings daily eclipsed 200 million in March, up from just 10 million at the end of last year.
However, still there are some hiccups. A “Zoombombing” phenomenon has sparked warnings about lax security. Virtual intruders have interrupted religious ceremonies, remote classes, and other Zoom gatherings. In some cases, pornographic images have been displayed.
Yuan vowed this week to step up data security, and apologised.
“We recognise that we have fallen short of the community’s — and our own — privacy and security expectations. For that, I am deeply sorry.” Yuan said in a message posted online.
“We did not design the product with the foresight that, in a matter of weeks, every person in the world would suddenly be working, studying, and socialising from home,” Yuan said.
“These new, mostly consumer use cases have helped us uncover unforeseen issues with our platform.”
While, Zoom is admitting it has security problems, it still has “a ton of work” to do to fix them and restore trust in the platform.
Source : The Star