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The pandemic is causing an increase in downloads of video conferencing applications

The pandemic is causing an increase in downloads of video conferencing applications

Business communication apps recorded record levels of growth in March, according to statistics from mobile data provider App Annie.

With a growing portion of the world’s population now living under some form of government blockade, many organizations have had to change their business processes, and their employees have had to adopt a work-from-home culture on a scale that has never been tried so far.

Not surprisingly, demand for video conferencing applications has risen in recent weeks, with company-focused mobile app downloads reaching 62 million in the week of March 14-21, the highest number ever.

According to a report by App Annie, this number increased by 45% compared to the previous week and by 90% compared to the average weekly download before Covid-19. Commercial app downloads are the largest increase in any category in iOS and Google Play stores.

Microsoft and Google Hangouts Meet entered the rankings, and Zoom Cloud Meetings clearly won; has seen a large number of downloads in the US, the UK and across Europe. According to the Annie App, during record week, Zoom was downloaded 14 times more than the weekly average in the fourth quarter of 2019 in the US 20 times higher in the UK; 22 times more in France; and amazingly 55 times more in Italy. (Higher numbers refer to areas that started crashes earlier.)

During the same period, Hangouts Meet recorded 30 times the weekly level of downloads compared to the last quarter of 2019 in the US, while the teams recorded an increase of 11 times.

«Because people face uncertain deadlines for the duration of social isolation, video conferencing applications have the potential to greatly influence our daily habits, breaking down geological barriers and encouraging the ability to work and socialize relatively easily,» he said. Lexi Sydow from the Annie App on the blog. Post detailing application download numbers.

Long-term impact

With President Trump announcing this week that federal coronavirus guidelines will remain in effect until at least April 30, he is expected to continue dramatically adopting the use of video conferencing software.

Tom Eagle, senior director of research at Gartner, believes that the COVID-19 crisis will be a «catalyst for transformative cultures and work practices that will be significantly characterized by working remotely,» noting that video conferencing will become an indispensable tool. collaboration and communication.

In recent years, Gartner has predicted that in the unified communications market, the cloud video conferencing market, which includes platforms such as Cisco Webex, Zoom and Microsoft Teams, will only be overtaken in terms of growth through cloud-based telephony.

«This is a direct result of the current digital workplace and the changing nature of work, as well as the current COVID-19 crisis, which continues to drive the demand for video conferencing at an accelerated rate,» Eagle said.

Even before the pandemic broke out, research showed that the demand for collaborative software and video conferencing tools was already growing. According to the Gartner Workforce Consumer Survey, the average amount of time employees spend on meetings each week reached 11.7 hours, with 9% of respondents spending more than 20 hours of their work week in meetings.

As companies grow to a more global presence, teams disperse geographically, making face-to-face collaboration increasingly difficult. As a result, a more mobile workforce now requires greater and more convenient access to collaborative tools in the workplace than ever before.

«With the combination of non-routine workforce growth and this profile of workplace meetings, corporate real estate decisions and IT planners are often geared towards providing more convenient access to collaborative technologies such as video conferencing.» said the Eagle. “They do this not only in the office, but in common areas, such as small meeting rooms; Access for domestic and mobile workers should also be ensured.

«An agile workforce needs all of these options to improve productivity.»