Stuck in traffic and late for a meeting? No problem; if you drive a Tesla, you’ll soon be able to join the Zoom call directly from your vehicle.
This is according to Zoom itself, which announced the news during its Zoomtopia 2022 event on Tuesday (via Drive Tesla Canada).
The feature has been long in the making. In April 2020, some Tesla drivers asked CEO Elon Musk whether the car’s interior camera could be used for a Zoom meeting, and Zoom wasn’t completely against the idea, while Tesla remained silent. But a month later, Musk confirmed that video conferencing within a Tesla was “definitely a future feature.”
Now, Nitasha Walia, Zoom’s Group Product Manager, confirmed that Zoom is definitely coming to “all new Tesla models soon.” In a short demo, the feature was shown in action in a Tesla Model Y, apparently showing the car’s cabin camera, which stands above the rear-view mirror, in action for the first time. The car is parked and charging during the call, and if you look closely, you’ll see that the Zoom call is accessed from the car’s built-in calendar feature.
There are still several unknowns regarding Zoom calls in Tesla calls. Given Zoom’s previous comments about safety, it’s unlikely that the feature will be available while driving. But we don’t know whether it will be available on Wi-Fi only, and whether Tesla’s Premium Connectivity, which offers faster internet for a monthly fee, will be required.
On Tuesday, Zoom also announced some new features unrelated to cars, most notably Zoom Mail and Calendar. With these apps, which are currently in beta, Zoom becomes more of a one-stop solution for managing your tasks and meetings, similar to Google Workspace. Notable features include end-to-end encryption when emails are sent between two Zoom Mail Service users, and an appointment booking feature, making it easier for users to select an available time for a Zoom meeting.
The company also announced Zoom Spots, a “virtual coworking space” for “free-form, video-first conversations.” It’s coming in early 2023, the company said.