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Report: Zoom Investing in Slack-like Chat Feature

Zoom is making investments in its messaging capabilities in a bid to better compete with Slack and Microsoft Teams, according to media reports.

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Zoom is reportedly making investments in its messaging capabilities in a bid to better compete with Slack and Microsoft Teams, according to media reports.

First reported The Information and cited by several other media organizations, Zoom is working on a significant upgrade to the platforms messaging function to supplement its video capabilities.

According to The Information, Zoom’s plan is to create a more advanced messaging feature like Slack. The company has hired engineers to build out the new messaging product, but it’s still several months away from an official release.

Applications like Slack and Microsoft Teams are used by many organizations for both internal and external communication thanks to several features and integrations that Zoom doesn’t have along with better chat functionality.

Zoom is the early winner for pandemic-driven remote work in the unified communications space due to the platform’s ease of use and speed of deployment, but more complete apps like Teams and Slack threaten that market share.

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Zoom and Slack have been partners since the platforms announced their first integration in 2015. Several other integrations have been announced since as teams begin to rely heavily on communication software.

In 2019, Slack CEO Steward Butterfield and Zoom CEO Eric S. Yuan shared the stage at Slack’s Frontiers conference to announce new integrations, including the ability to manage Zoom meetings in Slack, calendar integrations and more.

Unsurprisingly, Zoom had a monster second quarter, reporting a revenue increase of more than 350% year over year along with loads of new customers.

The company’s stock price is now hovering around $400 after rarely eclipsing the $100 mark before March.

Slack also saw pandemic-related growth, but not nearly as much as its competitors as revenues increase just 49% year-over-year.

A deeper marriage of the two platforms – and possibly an acquisition – could help bring much needed chat capabilities to Zoom and better video functionality to Slack. With no credible reports of a merger, we’ll have to wait and see how Zoom plans to improve its chat feature.

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