Zoom’s usage jumps by 151%, takes lead over Microsoft Teams

With the Wuhan Coronavirus forcing people to work from home, a report by research firm Apptopia says, the number of people using Zoom Video Communications Inc’s app has nearly trippled that of its nearest rival Microsoft Corp’s Teams.

The COVID-19 driven work from home call has boosted demand for video conferencing platforms.

According to the report, business-focused Teams was used by 1.56 million users on the same day, while Slack saw less than 500,000 users.

Although Zoom declined to comment on usage statistics, it said active users in March were 151% higher on average from a year earlier.

Zoon has a huge following among schools and students and it has relaxed its norms for schools by lifting its 40-minute meeting limit on free accounts to facilitate online classes.

“First, Zoom’s big advantage, as far as software goes, is it’s scalable, easy to use, and deployable across multiple devices,” said DA Davidson analyst Rishi Jaluria. “Second, Zoom has a freemium model, which allows companies to dip their toes in the water before committing to a large roll-out, and expansions come easy.”

Zoom, Team and Slack offer free, watered down, versions with limited features and they all have tiered pricing models for paid subscribers.

Incidentally, an increase in users might may not necessarily translate to a jump in revenues.

“We have definitely seen an uptick in usage, but a lot of that is on the free side,” said Zoom Chief Financial Officer Kelly Steckelberg during a conference call earlier this month.

Zoom’s shares, which debuted last year at $36 per share, were trading at $146 on Tuesday. Its market value has more than doubled since the end of January.

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