Zoom has seemingly welcomed Reliance Jio’s foray into the cloud-based video conferencing market. Hours after Jio’s made in India rival JioMeet became widely available for all users, San Jose-headquartered Zoom has sent out a press statement reiterating how it has been seeing “intense” competition since it was established in 2011, and yet it has become the platform of choice for millions around the world. Zoom did not talk about how JioMeet borrows literally “so much” (this is something that’s become the talk of social media, with many calling JioMeet a Zoom rip-off) from its platform though.
“Zoom has experienced intense competition since it was established in 2011, and yet we have become the platform of choice for millions of participants around the world,” a Zoom spokesperson said in a press statement, adding that “we know what it takes to become the unified communications platform we are today, including the immense amount of work and focus required to create our frictionless user experience, sophisticated security, and scalable architecture.”
There’s no denying that JioMeet is Reliance Jio’s answer to Zoom, a video calling service that has witnessed a meteoric rise in the wake of the novel coronavirus outbreak. But it has also been marred with a lot of controversy. Only recently, the company had acknowledged that it had been open to impacting user accounts outside of mainland China (which means, virtually anybody) at the behest of the Chinese government until very recently. It doesn’t do it anymore, it had said recently, but owing to the current wave of anti-China sentiment in India, Zoom is under a lot of scrutiny.
Intelligence agencies have reportedly raised concerns about using Zoom, urging the government to either ban or actively discourage its use in India. The government has already banned 59 apps with links to China in India, and even though Zoom is not part of the list, it’s safe to assume it’s being closely watched.
JioMeet has every ingredient in the book, including a made in India tag, which could make it the country’s go-to video calling service. Like Zoom, JioMeet also lets you video call simultaneously with up to 100 people. Each JioMeet video call can go “uninterrupted” for up to 24 hours though which gives it an edge over Zoom which caps free meetings at 40 minutes. Like Zoom, JioMeet also lets you schedule meetings and share screens. Hosts can sign up with either a mobile number or email ID, send out invite links, and password protect their meetings. JioMeet also offers waiting rooms just like Zoom.
Zoom knows JioMeet is tough competition which is why it has come up and let it (and users) know it’s up to the challenge. It would be interesting to see how things pan out in the days to come.