Home / Technology / News /  Zoom announces dedicated video calling devices with Zoom for Home

Viral video collaboration platform, Zoom, today announced the Zoom For Home device, which is a home appliance with the software integrated inside. The device, called Zoom for Home - DTEN ME, has a 27-inch display, three wide angle cameras and an eight microphone array. The display allows touch control, whiteboard and interactive screen sharing. DTEN Me is the first device, in partnership with a company by the same name, but Zoom will also be working with other partners for such displays.

Users can login to Zoom for Home with an existing Zoom account. They can also connect their calendars with the product, start ad-hoc or scheduled meetings through the device and IT departments in enterprises can manage the device too. It is priced at $599 and will start shipping from August 2020 onwards, and users can order it through the DTEN website. The device will work with all Zoom Meeting licenses, including both basic and free tiers.

In a lot of ways, Zoom for Home is just like a smart speaker. However, there are no voice assistants inside this device and it doesn’t control other devices in your home as an Echo or Google Home speaker would do. Microsoft recently announced Teams displays, which are similar to the Zoom for Home, but will also have the company’s voice assistant, Cortana built in.

Of course, Zoom for Home gives the video collaboration platform an early mover advantage, but the user base for this isn’t immediately clear. While it is true that video collaboration tools have grown dramatically during the pandemic, many may find it difficult to spend money on a device meant solely for this purpose.

Essentially, even though Zoom calls the device a “home" solution, it might actually be better suited for offices. A Zoom for Home setup in meeting rooms could be used by smaller companies with few employees instead of spending on big screens and more complex IT setups. Many may also have privacy concerns about having a device like this, with microphones and camera in their homes.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Prasid Banerjee

An engineering dropout, Prasid Banerjee has reported on technology in India for various publications. He reports on technology through text and audio, focusing on its core aspects, like consumer impact, policy and the future.
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