Zoom brings Alexa for Business to conference room calls

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Zoom announced that the business-oriented Amazon Alexa integration is now available to everyone in Zoom Rooms devices. The launch comes a day after Zoom launched a new immersive view feature that allows meeting hosts to organize attendees in a single virtual environment.

Amazon launched Alexa for Business in 2017 to bring the tech titan’s voice assistant to business communication tools like Cisco, Polycom, and Zoom itself. This meant that companies using these tools could say something like: “Alexa, join my meeting“to start their call or”Alexa, find me a free room. “This was made possible by an array of features that Amazon had previously released to make Alexa more compatible with desktop environments, including the ability to integrate video and audio calling software and integrations with Office 365. and Google Calendar.

Set to work

At its annual Zoomtopia event in October, Zoom announced that Alexa for Business will eventually arrive for Zoom Rooms Appliances, a Zoom program launched in 2019 to bring dedicated Zoom hardware to meeting rooms around the world. This one launched in beta in January and is now ready for prime time.

Above: Zoom Rooms: “Alexa, book this room. “

With this integration, businesses can start and stop all of their Zoom Rooms meetings using voice commands, as well as search for available rooms in the building to host a meeting by asking something like: “Alexa, find me an available room for 45 minutes. “

As the world tries to regain some semblance of normalcy, businesses will explore new, non-contact ways to organize their meetings. With Zoom Rooms and Alexa, a small team in one office can communicate with another team in another office without having to touch any buttons.

It’s worth noting that companies could already configure Zoom Rooms, which is essentially Zoom’s software product for physical conference rooms, to work with Alexa on Amazon’s own Echo hardware and other third-party devices such as Logitech. But today’s announcement opens Alexa to businesses that don’t have (or don’t want to buy) other Alexa-enabled devices, as admins can now activate Alexa for Business directly through the Zoom management portal.

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