Zoom mulls legal action against JioMeet for copying user interface

Zoom JioMeet identical twins?
Photo by abizon

Video conferencing service provider Zoom Video Communications may pursue legal action against JioMeet over uncanny similarities between the two apps in terms of the user interface (UI) and design, the company’s India head Sameer Raje said.

India’s leading telecom operator Reliance Jio, owned by Mukesh Ambani, launched JioMeet last week. Just after the commercial launch, people took to social media platforms to ridicule JioMeet over its uncanny resemblance to the Zoom application. 

However, Jio has now made some quick changes to the applications in terms of logo and colour scheme through an update. 

“We have a lot of discussions internally…it is a matter for my legal team to look into it and I will leave it for them,” Raje told the Economic Times in an interview. 

“We knew it [JioMeet] was coming. It’s fine, it is not the first time Zoom has faced competition. Our strength has been our products and technology, and our focus is on customers. What our competitors do is their strategy,” he said.

JioMeet offers an unlimited number of free calls in high definition (720p) to users and supports up to 100 participants. As per the information available on the official website, JioMeet allows up to 24 hours of free video conferencing that are encrypted and password-protected

JioMeet is available for use through desktop browsers and standalone apps for macOS, Windows, iOS, and Android.

During the interview, Raje reiterated that Zoom is an American company, and it does not share data with any government. He added that Zoom has two data centers in the country.

The Indian government already issued a warning against the use of Zoom citing data security as the major concern. 

To allay fears, Zoom has been running a promotional campaign on microblogging site Twitter highlighting the fact that the company is US-based and has no link with China. The company has also been engaging with the Indian government and various ministry to allay privacy and data security related concerns.

“We do recognize that as we continue to introduce ourselves to the Indian market, there has been some confusion about the facts as it relates to Zoom. Zoom is a US company, publicly traded on the NASDAQ, founded and headquartered in San Jose, California,” Raje was quoted as saying. 

Zoom quickly became the top video conferencing application on the Android operating system with 35 million monthly active users in the third week of June, up from 4 million users in March 2020. 

Other video conferencing services like Google Hangout Meets and Microsoft Teams have also seen rapid growth in India as people started to work from home after the nationwide lockdown. Not just businesses, but educational institutes have also started using these services for online classes.

Sensing the opportunity, Bharti Airtel is also planning to launch its own-branded video conferencing service for startups and enterprise customers. Airtel will be promoting data localization and security as a key differentiator in the market.

The Sunil Mittal-led telco, which serves half a million medium and small enterprises and 2500 large enterprises, already offers bundled video conferencing solutions in partnership Zoom, Cisco WebEx and Google Meet.

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