The COVID-19 pandemic has changed our lives around tremendously. It has changed how we live, work, travel, and even interact with one another. One of the main victims of the pandemic was the tourism sector; one of the biggest winners was the communications and e-commerce sector.
When companies were forced to send the employees to work from home, a new area outside the traditional office environment was born – remote working. Working from home was a solution against the pandemic in 2020; in 2021, it has integrated into the culture to such an extent that many businesses do not plan to return to their previous setup once the pandemic is over.
“Although it stole an early march on other players in the first few months of the crisis, it does now have much stiffer competition from the likes of Microsoft and Google, who have significantly upped their game,” said Susannah Streeter, analyst at Hargreaves Lansdown.
“It may be that we have become so used to pandemic habits that we will stick with our virtual social lives, particularly for long-distance friendships and work relationships. But just how large a slice of the live video pie Zoom manages to hang on to will depend on how it matches up to its powerful rivals.”
Zoom became a vital tool for remote workers. It offers workers the opportunity to communicate, have audio conferences, chats, and conduct webinars. Zoom’s business exploded during the pandemic, and its CEO Eric Yuan believes that remote working is “here to stay”. Despite investors believing that restriction lifting will murder Zoom’s growth, the company does not agree.
Zoom expects its shares to rise by over 40% this year, reaching almost $4 billion. “The fourth quarter marked a strong finish to an unprecedented year for Zoom,” Mr. Yuan commented, “As the world emerges from the pandemic, our work has only begun.”
“The future is here with the rise of remote and work from anywhere trends,” Mr. Yuan added, “We recognize this new reality and are helping to empower our own employees and those of our customers to work and thrive in a distributed manner.”
Zoom has positive plans for its progression into 2021. The company expects to generate over $900 million in just Q1 of the new year. Despite workers and students returning to their physical spaces as vaccine supplies increase, investors believe that COVID-19 has a lasting impact on office and school life.
“Zoom’s growth has been remarkable to watch. In under a year, the video conference platform has united a socially distanced world and become the defining app of the coronavirus era. However, with the vaccine programme in full swing and end of the pandemic in sight, Zoom’s growth over the past year could be hard to sustain,” said managing director at the digital agency R/GA London Rebecca Bezzina.
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