Zoom, one of the best success stories during the whole coronavirus pandemic, now faces a great new competitor in an app that is actually backed up by Asia's own wealthiest person known as Mukesh Ambani.
Ambani's Reliance Industries Ltd., which has already scored billions of dollars of investments from Facebook Inc. to the Intel Corp for its own digital businesses, has already launched the new JioMeet video conferencing app right after its beta testing.
The app is said to have already garnered a little more than 100,000 downloads on the known Google Play Store right after becoming available on Thursday evening. Just like Google Meet, Microsoft Teams, and even other videoconferencing services, JioMeet actually offers unlimited high-definition calls, but quite unlike Zoom, it does not limit its users to only 40-minutes.
The advantages of JioMeet versus Zoom
Calls on JioMeet are said to be able to go as long as 24 hours, and every single meeting is said to be encrypted and also password-protected, the company announced on the JioMeet website.
The launch previously coincided with the whole nationwide ban on many dozens of well-known apps from Chinese technology giants that included ByteDance Ltd's TikTok as well as Alibaba Group Holding Ltd's very own UC Web, on grounds that they have threatened security as well as their sketchy data privacy.
JioMeet finally went viral on Friday on social media coming along with the hashtag #MadeinIndia. The app is also one facet of Ambani's new rapidly expanding digital empire, which already includes India's own largest telecom operator which already has nearly 400 million users.
Recently on Friday, Reliance suddenly announced that Intel Capital has already invested $253 million into JioPlatforms, a certain unit of Ambani's own oil-to-retail conglomerate. The US chipmaker's own arm is the 11th investor to come in about as many weeks before the announcement of its backing from the whole digital service platform.
Could Ambani compete in the US?
According to the managing director of the boutique consultancy known as Bexley Advisors' Utkarsh Sinha, JioMeet is expected to be a very credible disruptor in the entire space. Just the main fact that the new service has zero time limits on calls makes it a serious and also dangerous challenger to Zoom, despite its own entrenchment.
JioPlatforms is already amassing a huge range of services that stretch from music streaming all the way to online retail and even payments that are fast turning into a whole e-commerce juggernaut that can finally take on Alphabet Inc's very own Google and Amazon.com Inc. on its very own home turf.
Just like everywhere else, the video conferencing apps have already become lifelines for about millions of Indians that are working in their own cramped homes during the ongoing Covid-19 lockdowns.