People have been wondering for years what the next big thing on the internet might be. They tried to find a way to make an app that will change the world. A couple of months ago, this happened with Zoom. The app has received millions of new users, and it seems that everyone is using it now. But how did this happen? Why Zoom? Here, we will go through some of the most common questions about this app and how to make your own alternative if that is what you’re interested in.
The Story of Zoom
The Zoom story is quite interesting, and it shows that even the most famous apps and companies struggle from time to time. Starting out is not easy for anyone, but they managed to inspire so many people with their actions.
The app was originally released in 2011, and it had a rocky start. In the first year, the company struggled to find investors since many believed that videotelephony had run its course. After a while, they managed to raise enough money to launch their product. The Zoom app’s beta version came out in 2012, and later that year, they got their first user — Stanford University. In 2013, Zoom officially moved out of beta, and it could support up to fifteen people at a time.
During the same year, they raised $6 million, and the app kept improving. The number of users continued to grow, and they went from 400,000 users in the first month to one million in mid-2013. A year later, the number of users increased tenfold, and more and more people (and companies) became interested in collaborating with Zoom.
With each new version of the program, the video conferencing service continued to improve. In 2015, the maximum number of participants in a video chat was raised to 50 and later to 1,000! Of course, this number depends on the plan you (or your company) buy.
That wasn’t the end for Zoom’s growth — in 2017, the company became a unicorn, which means that it remained a privately owned startup, but it was worth over $1 billion. Finally, in April 2020, the CEO of the company, Eric Yuan, announced that they had more than 200 million daily users.
So what exactly made Zoom so popular? It is not the first peer-to-peer video communication service, and it probably wasn’t the best either when it first appeared almost a decade ago. Something made the app so special that it managed to conquer the entire market. A couple of years ago, Skype was the only service people knew. They even called Google’s Hangouts Skype. Everything was Skype, and yet, Zoom still managed to become a juggernaut of a company.
The first and most appealing thing about the app is its UI. You don’t need to be a tech expert to use the app, and you don’t even need to log in to attend the meeting. It is more than obvious why people would rather pick something that’s easy to use and works perfectly well regardless of the device. While we are on the subject of devices, Zoom is available on Windows, Linux, Mac, iOS, Android, and nearly anything else you can imagine.
Of course, the fact that the app is affordable is quite important. You can use it for free and get unlimited one-on-one time or host a meeting with up to a hundred participants. When it comes to performance, the app works like a charm. There are no bugs, memory leaks, or any other problems, which is not something that many companies can take pride in.
Finally, Zoom can be quite fun. You can customize your background and add whatever you feel will improve the meeting and lift the spirit of the group. At first glance, Zoom seems like any other similar service, but when you dig a bit deeper, you can easily recognize all the aspects in which Zoom shines.
How Safe Is Zoom?
The entire world got under lockdown, and there are so many people working from home. Zoom video meetings have become essential for most companies, and it allows them to continue working and talking to their employees in real-time. However, having an app in every living room in the world can seem a bit scary. Many want to know how secure the app is and if there are any potential problems they should worry about.
There have been a couple of breaches, and people are concerned about their private info for a reason. Hosting a Zoom meeting can be fun, but only if you are careful enough. People are discovering new ways to abuse the app out of boredom. So as with any other thing on the internet, be careful with the links and what you click on.
Furthermore, use every precaution available to lower the chances of having your call hijacked by intruders.
Is There an Alternative?
Yes — there is always an alternative. We have already mentioned programs like Skype and Hangouts, and there are probably a lot more you can try out. However, the main problem is quality. There is a reason why everyone uses Zoom, and finding an alternative that’s a lot worse is never a good option.
However, there is still one option left for you to try, and that’s creating your own Zoom-like app. It can be anything you imagine, and there are no limits to what you can achieve. If you have any problems with the design or user experience of the program, you can eliminate it in your own version. Before you think your attempt will be pointless, just remember what Zoom managed to do. A couple of years ago, no one could have imagined that any app would be able to dethrone Skype, and yet, here we are.
How to Approach the Problem
Now that you have a problem at hand (which is designing your own app), you need to consider the way you want to approach it. Zoom tech software is not complex, and there are far more complicated codes out there.
It also might be the best way to avoid security concerns and paying for monthly subscriptions. If you enjoy making apps, you probably already have a preferred programming language you could use. However, if this is not the case, you might want to consider finding a custom software developing service that can help you with this issue.
Which Technology Stack You Should Use
One of the main differences between Zoom and other apps, like Skype, is that Zoom was initially created with cloud technology in mind. It also uses services from Microsoft and Amazon, as well as their own servers.
Usually, the choice of technology is based on the platform. Some companies design iOS apps only, while others focus on Android. You should ask yourself who your target audience is and whether you want users to access the app from their smartphones, desktops, laptops, or something else.
If your goal is to create a native app, you can choose between iOS and Android. You can use Swift and Objective-C (for iOS) or Kotlin and Java (for Android) for designing apps. There is a third option as well. You can always opt for React Native or Xamarin if you want to give your users the freedom to use any type of mobile device.
The next question is whether you want your app to be mobile-only, or if you want a web page as well. The primary reason why developers focus on mobile apps is that over 50% of internet traffic comes from mobile devices. However, since you plan to design an app for video calls, you might want to include both mobile and web versions.
Defining Features of Your App
The following step is an important part of the process, and it will allow developers to plan accordingly. You need to consider which functions or features your app should offer. Now, there are numerous things you can add that users will adore, so you should create a list of features that seem exciting to you.
For example, having a preview or a test is always a good thing. Allow your users to test their cameras before they join the call. Add something like a lobby, where they can see if everything works and looks good. We all know how tiring it is to wait for someone to adjust their settings in the middle of a conversation.
Secondly, the chat is always important. Even though your primary focus is a video call, you should integrate a messenger in it as well. This will give them more freedom over their meetings. They can even turn off the camera for any reason and use chat only.
Needless to say, you will also need a file-sharing system. Meetings usually involve important data or files that participants should check out. It would seem strange not to be able to send a document to your colleagues. However, adding a file-sharing system or an option to record meetings will also mean that you need to provide storage for your app.
Finally, the desktop sharing option is what made apps like Zoom so popular. You can show other participants your screen and what you are seeing. This way, they can easily learn or see the steps they need to make to achieve their goals. So be sure to integrate the screen sharing option as well.
Steps of the Development Process
Designing an app from scratch seems fun, but it can be challenging. Here, we will go through some of the most common steps you will need to cover if you want to create a functional app.
The first step is back-end development. Based on the features your app has, the process might get a bit complex. Among the things you’ll need are servers, storage, and many other parts that will make the backbone of your app.
Of course, the next thing on the agenda is UX and UI design. User experience and user interface are among the most important aspects since your users are directly in contact with them. You want everything to be attractive, yet remain simple so that users don’t get lost in numerous features. If your app is too complex and difficult to use, they will just move to something simpler, so you will need to make it just right.
The primary difference between back-end and front-end in this case is simple. The back-end needs to work properly. Your developers need to know what they are doing, and it doesn’t matter how messy or complex it is. On the other hand, the front-end needs to be easy to understand and user-friendly. This means you need to make sure that everything is functional and that users can navigate your app with ease.
After the App Is Complete
Based on your goals, you might need to figure out what to do once the app is complete. If you plan on using it within your company as a replacement for apps like Zoom, you’ll be ready to go. Once the app is finished, you can simply install it and start using it with your employees or colleagues within the company.
However, if you are hoping for more, you might want to consider taking a few marketing steps. Advertising your app is rather important, and it is one of the essential steps of the process. No matter how great your app is (even if it is the best one available), people can’t use it if they aren’t aware of its existence. So be sure to plan your marketing steps and to find a way to promote your app even before it launches.
People love trying out new things, and if you want to become a new juggernaut in the field, you will need great marketing. During a time of crisis, the popularity of Zoom sky-rocketed. Covid-19 forced so many people to stay at home, and they needed to adapt. And Zoom allowed them to do just that. Don’t worry about whether or not you’ll be able to dethrone Zoom. Just remember that no one believed that people would use anything other than Skype.
Having the Right Idea
Developing an app can be complex and challenging. The best thing about it is that you don’t need to worry about any of that. We can help you every step of the way and ensure that your idea comes to life. Our company specializes in developing apps for iOS, Android, and nearly anything else. We can tell you the best possible approach and the simplest way to realize your dreams.
However, you will need the right idea. A software development company can make your dreams come true, but only if you have them. Naturally, they can give you a few suggestions along the way, but it all comes down to clients’ wishes. Ask yourself whether you have a game-changing idea that could revolutionize the whole video conference market for the second time.
You might be sitting on another billion-dollar idea. Who knows. The only important thing you should remember is that it is possible to make the idea come to life. Even if you are inexperienced in app design, that will not pose a problem.
Finally, many people are wondering how much it would cost. The cost of the app is based on the technology, complexity, programming languages, platforms you plan to use, and so much more. Finding info like this online is usually misleading and will have you believe that it is either dirt cheap or that the whole process is overpriced. So instead of wondering about the price, just head over to our page and get a quote for your specific project.
Zoom made quite an impact in the past couple of months, and its worth keeps increasing rapidly. No one could have predicted the impact this app would have. It has become an essential part of many businesses across the world due to the pandemic. However, did you know that you can create your own app for video meetings?
If you think about it, Zoom is not the first one to appear, and it is likely that they won’t be the last. So instead of paying a monthly subscription or wondering about some missing features and safety, you can always create something that will be perfect for you and your company.
Needless to say, designing an app like Zoom is not easy, but it is achievable. With the right developing company, all you’ll need to bring to the table is a game-changing idea.