Zoom Video Communications' generative AI digital assistant is now available for no additional cost to paid Zoom accounts.

The Zoom AI Companion, formerly known as Zoom IQ, will be rolled out across various services on the Zoom platform, including Meetings, Team Chat, Phone, Email and Whiteboard and be available in a side panel.

Separately, Zoom said that Zoom IQ for Sales will be renamed Zoom Revenue Accelerator.

Zoom launched its generative AI efforts in June with free trials of Team Chat compose and Meeting Summary. The launch Zoom AI Companion marks a more significant rollout across the company's platform. Zoom said it will incorporate its own large language models as well as third party models such as Meta's Llama 2, OpenAI and Anthropic.

The collaboration software space is rapidly adopting generative AI. For instance, Google Cloud is adding a bevy of AI-driven features to Workspace and its platform. Microsoft Teams will have co-pilots.

Another thread to consider is whether vendors are charging for add-ons for generative AI capabilities. Some vendors are adding it to the platform without additional costs while others are adding new SKUs.

Zoom emphasized that it won't use customer audio, video, chat, screen-sharing, attachments or other customer content to train models. In addition, AI Companion is turned off by default.

Here's a look at AI Companion and the roadmap ahead.

  • In Zoom Meetings, AI Companion will enable highlights, smart chapters, review summaries and next steps. Attendees can catch up on meetings using an AI Companion side panel. Hosts can get an automated meeting summary. In spring 2024, Zoom said it will add real-time feedback on their presence in meetings and coaching on presentation skills.
  • Zoom Team Chat will use AI Companion to draft messages based on chat thread context and change tone and length. Long threads will get summaries shortly and Zoom said users will be able to auto-complete sentences and schedule meetings from chat in early 2024.
  • In the fall, Zoom Whiteboard will get AI Companion to help generate ideas. In spring 2024, users will be able to use whiteboard content to generate images and populate templates.
  • Zoom Mail will have the option for draft email suggestions from AI Companion in the fall. In spring 2024, Zoom Phone will be able to summarize SMS threads and calls.
  • The company added that in the spring of 2024, AI Companion will have a conversational interface for pre-meeting preparation, in-meeting support and post meeting summaries, stakeholder recap and action items.

As for Zoom Revenue Accelerator, the company said it will expand capabilities in the fall with Virtual Coach, Deal Risk Signals and Discover Monthly for sales teams. Virtual Coach aims to dynamically train sales teams with conversation simulations. Deal Risk Signals will send alerts for stalled deals. And Discover Monthly looks at competitor trends from sales calls. 


Constellation Research's take

Constellation Research analyst Liz Miller handicapped the Zoom moves. She said:

"Zoom, like many vendors in the CX space, have realized that the high-fidelity signal of customer voice at the moment of engagement, be it in a sales call or in a customer service call, can no longer sit in a silo of communication channel. That voice, thanks to talk to text transcription and AI models trained to extract key signals including sentiment and intent, can now lead to powerful workflows that benefit the buyer and the business. And, thanks to Zoom’s pre-built CRM integrations, this intelligence and conversation doesn’t just sit in the conversation channel but can now be included with CRM data.

The real question for me is where Zoom will pivot next. It isn’t enough to apply AI to voice and engagement. It needs to connect across the silos of sales, service and marketing--something that CRM has proven to do poorly in previous incarnations. Will Zoom become that next platform? Will Zoom be the connection point for all conversations and points of collaboration, including those being held in and at events and marketing-led experiences? While Zoom is keeping pace with the CX platforms out there (and by that I specifically mean those solutions that span Sales, Marketing and Service not just CCaaS and UCaaS tools) is there enough in the innovation engine to think beyond and deliver something more than what the rest of the market has? Right now, it feels like a bigger game of keeping up rather than surging ahead."