By Gavin Gibbon
Zoom Video Communications app recorded one million new users just a month after VoIP ban was lifted
The number of people using the Zoom Video Communications in the UAE increased by 900 percent just four weeks after a nationwide ban on some voice over internet protocol (VoIP) apps was lifted.
According to Sam Tayan, managing director for the Middle East and Africa at Zoom, the company gained at least 100,000 new free and paid UAE-based users within the first week of the relaxation.
That number increased significantly to one million users with the first month as lockdown measures were implemented by authorities to curb the spread of coronavirus - students shifted to distance learning and businesses implemented working from home practices.
Tayan also revealed that 250 K-12 schools in the country took advantage of Zoom’s offer to lift the 40 minutes meeting time limit - standard for free users.
He told Arabian Business that the company has nearly doubled its full fiscal year 2021 revenue outlook after the Q1 results.
“The general free user usage and, now, growing, paid usage in the Gulf has been impressive and a leading indicator of the potential in this market,” he said.
According to media reports earlier this month, a decision on whether restrictions on video call apps will resume in the UAE post-Covid-19 will be made by telecoms operators and not the regulator.
Tayan said: “At Zoom, we continue to have conversations with the region’s governments about how Zoom is a valuable tool that helps increase productivity and growth, meets the highest standards of security for its users, and can support the development of a digitally-based global economy.
“Zoom is leaning into the Gulf and is very optimistic about the growth potential in the Middle East.”
This includes plans to expand into Saudi Arabia and Bahrain, as well as working with Higher Colleges of Technology and universities in the UAE.