Zoom will be adding ads to its video chat platform, it has announced.
The app – which began as a largely business-focused service, but which grew over 2020 and various lockdowns to become a key way for people to keep in touch with friends and family – will begin by showing ads at the end of video calls.
But the marketing could eventually spread more widely, Zoom suggested in its announcement.
For now, the ads will only show for users of Zoom’s free “Basic” plan. And it will only apply to only people in certain countries, if they join meetings that are being hosted by others on that same plan.
Zoom said the ads would help ensure that it could keep offering its free service, and that it would use the money “support investment and continue providing free Basic users with access to our robust platform”.
The company said that it had updated its privacy statement to reflect the new feature. It said that it would commit to not using any “meeting, webinar, or messaging content” – such as the audio or video files from meetings – to inform any of that marketing or advertising content.