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COVID-19: Zoom downloads explode as people work from home

By Shannon Williams
Wed 25 Mar 2020
FYI, this story is more than a year old

As the Covid-19 outbreak takes it hold across the globe, more business are shutting up shop and many workers moving to remote working. As a result, video conferencing and online meetings platform Zoom has seen a dramatic surge in the number of downloads. 

Between February 22 and March 22 2020, Zoom application downloads increased by 1,270% (over 12 times), according to data gathered by Learnbonds.com. 

The high downloads are on both iOS and Android platforms. Cumulatively, the two platforms have seen a total of 17,190,100 downloads over the period under review. By March 22, the Android version had 8,562,600 downloads while iOS had 8,627,500.

The highest Zoom application daily downloads were recorded on March 22, according to the research. The iOS platform had 685,200 downloads while the Android version had almost double the downloads at 1.3 million. An increase in daily downloads is expected as the Coronavirus infection rate continues to spike globally, with companies allowing employees to work from home.

The research shows that generally, for the iOS version, the downloads have been increasing steadily since February 22. By March 22, the downloads for iOS had spiked by 594.92%.

Android downloads witnessed fluctuations towards the end of February but later embarked on an upward trajectory. On February 22 and 23rd, the downloads were 144,800 and 141,200 respectively. A day later the downloads dropped to 139,700. However, from February 22th to March 22, the downloads for the Android Zoom app surged by a whopping 2713.85%.

Zoom had earlier indicated that after the Coronavirus was reported in China and most cities placed on lockdown, there was an increased usage for the application. China is Zoom's its ninth-largest market, and the company dropped its 40-minute limit for free calls to accommodate more users.

"The surge in Zoom download has been driven mainly by companies’ offices allowing employees to work from home and do remote video calls and other tasks. Additionally, other entities like museums, theatres, kindergartens, schools and many other businesses are jumping on the online video meeting apps like Zoom to connect with people to sustain normal operations," LearnBonds.com says. 

"As many people are forced to work home, this might spur the development of more remote educational systems globally in the future.

"Interestingly, as social gathering gets banned across the globe, Zoom has become a cultural phenomenon used to host parties, concerts, church services, and art shows. The application’s popularity is based on its layout which makes it easy to talk with multiple people at once. Additionally, it has some features that mirror social media apps," LearnBonds.com explains.

An overview of the audience age of Zoom users shows some similarities between both iOS and Android platforms.

On iOS, the highest age group is between 35-49 years old at 24%. This number is also similar to the Android platform. For the age group of between 25-34 years old, both platforms have recorded 23%.

An overview of the age group between 18-24 the iOS application has 23% while on Android this category is represented by 22%. On the other hand, the age group between 50-64 on iOS has 20% while on Android it is 21%. Notably, under the age group of 65 years and above both platforms have registered lower numbers iOs have 9% while android has 10%


"With the global economy grappling with losses as a result of the Coronavirus, video conferencing platforms like Zoom are among the few profiting during this crisis. Consequently, with the surge in the number of users, Zoom has been working to ensure all services remain afloat," LearnBonds.com says.

For example, the Zoom engineering operations team has been adding servers and other equipment inside every one of the company’s 17 data center locations. Interestingly, on March 23, Zoom experienced an outage globally due to a high number of users. However, all services were immediately restored.

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