If there is one company that benefitted from this pandemic, other than the casket and grave-digging industry, it has to be Zoom. For whatever reason, Zoom has taken off as the go-to choice for video conferencing during quarantine and has accrued almost half of the entire US market share for web conferencing apps. Now they are parlaying their good fortune into hardware with the announcement of Zoom for Home - DTEN ME, which is basically just a 27-inch tablet that has the Zoom app already installed.
Part of me is stunned. Moving into the tablet space feels kind of like the Tech equivalent of when an advertising firm lands a car company. It signals that they're one of the big dogs, or at least, that's what my several Mad Men re-watches would leave me to believe. Could Zoom actually be making a play to join the ranks of Microsoft, Google, Samsung, and Apple? Should we be trembling in fear and awe as Capitalism births from Heaven this new Titan of Tech that will forever shape our lives?
A dramatic recreation of capitalism giving birth.
Eh. My guess is no. I mean the tablet costs $600 and, while it seems to be able to Zoom pretty nice -- it has three built-in wide-angle cameras for high-resolution video and an 8-microphone array -- it doesn't seem to be able to do much else. I mean, let me throw Angy Birds on this puppy and maybe I'll think about it, but why would I get a tablet with Zoom that does nothing else when I can already get a tablet with Zoom that does everything else? It's like paying $600 just to save yourself a trip to the app store.
The product is being marketed as a tool to help remote workers with Zoom CEO Eric S. Yuan saying in a statement:
"After experiencing remote work ourselves for the past several months, it was clear that we needed to innovate a new category dedicated to remote workers. I'm so proud of the team for continuing to think outside the box and prove why Zoom is the best unified communications platform that can meet the needs of all types of users."
Again, I'm a remote worker and my laptop has been handling Zoom calls just fine, but I guess if you're a high-rolling CEO that wants to outfit all of your employees with a Zoom tablet to stress to them just how high-rolling you are, then I get it. Enjoy your Zoom calls on the crapper as you wipe your ass with gold-plated toilet paper and subject your workers to the sounds of your rich, powerful farts because you're the boss, dammit, and you bought them a phone app for $600 so the least they can do is listen.
Otherwise, I don't see the appeal to the average consumer. But that's just my thought process on it and hell, if I could predict tech trends then right now you'd be talking to the CEO of the premier Neopets battle-betting website. So who knows? Probably a pandemic or two later and Zoom will rule the world.
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