How many more chat apps you can fit to Internet?

After a controversial and annoying week for Zoom and its users, I reminded myself to update the Mac app and saw this new interface.

Of course no video meetings on Sunday…

This is really nice so I have clear actions and my schedule, most probably connected to Google Calendar. It felt like a proper Video Meeting manager.

However, the details are hidden behind the Chat tab. I curiously clicked that and saw this Slack-ish interface. Every social network platform look like Facebook News Feed and nowadays every business chat application look like Slack. I think there is nothing wrong with this to make sure muscle memory of an existing Slack user can find their way out unless there is a patent for this layout by Slack…

Slack or not to Slack

This is clearly Zoom’s take on Slack and business chat market. Most probably they are not pivoting their successful Video Meeting manager product with its proven superb infrastructure, but more like trying to capture new users planning to use a business chat application and finding out if Slack left any market share?

As every business chat should have nowadays, you have usual suspects here:

  • People you chat recently
  • Apps (details are below)
  • Files
  • Contacts

Maybe the most interesting ones are Files and Contacts. Slack lacks these sections as it is becoming harder to find files and contacts when you run in on a 100+ people organisation.

I’m not 100% sure but Zoom’s application felt like Native but it could be also yet-another-memory-eating-electron app. Nevertheless, the team at Zoom made a good job by extending their product.

Realise all apps are made by Zoom

Most probably the most interesting part of these for me is the Apps section which redirects you to https://marketplace.zoom.us/. This is a good indicator of Zoom desperately want to be a Platform (buzzword alert..). However, most of the Platform people and Product people know that building marketplaces are hard, building a momentum around it is even harder. Again, to fill the gaps, Zoom team made a lot of well-known apps for their marketplace to avoid the feeling of ghost town. Any developer coming to this page or a typical user coming to this page would feel that there is something valuable. I find this trick really smart and pragmatic when companies want to build a marketplace while they don’t have enough momentum from external developers.