Zoho Meeting : Skype Integration and more

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A lot many new features have gone in to Zoho Meeting since its Beta launch. A few of them below.

Skype Integration
We have added the ability to do Skype conferencing in Zoho Meeting. This allows you to converse with your participants.

When you click on Create Meeting, there is a ‘Skype’ checkbox (beside the Presenter’s section). Enabling it will get you a new column. Just enter the Skype ids of people whom you want to include in the conference.


You can also decide when you want to start the Skype conferencing. After you create a Meeting, you will get a button, Skype Conference. zmstartskype.JPG

On clicking that, users will be automatically dialed on Skype and included in the conferencing system!

Buddy List Auto Fill
Zoho Meeting also remembers the names/email addresses of the participants you have recently invited. When you type in the first few letters, there is an auto-fill/suggest box which helps fill the names easily.


Inviting Users to your Meeting Session
One feedback we receive quite often is, ‘How do I invite users to a meeting?’. There are multiple ways you can invite people to a Zoho Meeting session, at various stages of the meeting session.
1) When creating a meeting, you can specify their email addresses in ‘Participants’ section
2) After creating a Meeting, there is an link to ‘Invite‘ people. Clicking on that will give you multiple ways to invite people – standard Zoho Meeting invitation through email, sending a link using your Mail Client or IM, or using the Meeting Key to join


3) After installing the Agent/Presenter, there is an invite icon in the toolbar. Clicking on it will enable you invite people, giving their mail id.


For comments or suggestions, my id is srk(at)zoho(dot)com

Do give Zoho Meeting a shot and let us know what you think!

Recap: Zoho in 2007

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While we start a fresh year, I’d like to take a few minutes to recap the past year for Zoho which has been a great one. Similar to 2006, we rolled out several new applications and many major updates to our existing applications. In the graphic below, I summarized major updates (yellow blocks) and new releases (red blocks) for 2007. Each block is linked to the appropriate announcement. There are close to 100 important updates for 2007 (and many more un-announced ones).

We have also noticed that the average time spent on zoho applications went up month after month which is a good sign for online business applications in general. We hope to see this trend accelerate in 2008.

What’s next in 2008? I can say that this year is going to be even more exciting.

Zoho in ‘End-2007′ and ‘Begin-2008′ Lists

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We blogged about Zoho being part of PC World’s “Most Innovative Products of 2007” and Lifehacker’s “Top 10 New & Improved Apps of 2007” lists recently. Here’s more appreciation for Zoho from bloggers & analysts.

TechCrunch’s Mike Arrington puts Zoho in his “2008: Web 2.0 Companies I Couldn’t Live Without” list.

Zoho, particularly the spreadsheet application, has become an important productivity tool for us here at TechCrunch. We used it extensively to organize and discuss the hundreds of startups that applied to launch at TechCrunch40 last Fall. Whenever I open Office on my desktop to edit a spreadsheet, I feel the lack of collaborative features keenly. Frankly, Google Docs is just as useful, although Zoho was quicker to launch offline functionality, which gave them the edge on my list. Either product suite is a huge improvement on basic desktop office software.

It is nice to recall that last year we were on his ‘right on the edge‘ list and have moved up this year :-) Barry Dahl chose Zoho Notebook as Number 3 in his Top Web Tools of 2007.

A notebook can have as many pages as you choose (unlimited? I’m not sure), and those pages can be single stand-alone items such as a webpage, word processing (Zoho Writer) page, spreadsheet (Zoho Sheet) page, or a mashup of any of the items shown on the left-side panel below. For audio and video you can either upload completed files, link to files stored elsewhere (YouTube, etc.), or record on the fly.

Basically, I think that the value of this service is limited only by your own imagination. No bull.

Barry also has included Zoho to his ‘Hall of Fame’ list. Rick Broida at BNET picked Zoho Writer as one of the Top Web Services of 2007.

Zoho Writer  Sure, Google Docs gets all the glory, but if you want the Web’s most robust browser-based word processor, look to Zoho Writer. This year brought a wealth of new features, including a Word plug-in for easily importing and exporting Zoho Writer documents.

Ryan and Ashley Wagner at CyberNetNews have chosen Zoho Show among their ‘Most Powerful Websites‘ of 2007.

Zoho has developed an incredible suite of online office applications. In all they offer 18 different products and services, many of which are completely free for users. You can write documents, manage spreadsheets, create presentations, organize notes, and more with a single login.

Personally I do enjoy Google Docs because the interface is a little nicer, but when it comes to sheer power Zoho wins hands down. It’s the most complete online office suite available.

TIME’s featured Zoho as one of the ‘50 Best Websites 2007‘. We are at Number 22 (thanks to our users for voting!) and joined by sites like Netvibes, StumbleUpon, Twitter etc. Richard MacManus at Read/WriteWeb lists Zoho as one of his favorites of ’07 as well.

Marc Perton makes Zoho a part of his Best of ’07 list.

Zoho Writer
Google Docs may get all the glory, but Zoho feels a lot more like a real word processor, and includes such niceties as a tabbed interface, ad-free interface and, most impressive of all, a seamless offline mode—powered by Google Gears, which has yet to make an appearance in its parent’s online editor.

Craig Owens says, he “will definitely be using Zoho in 2008

I recently started playing with Zoho Suite and I’m convinced that it is head and shoulders above Google Docs in terms of features and usability. Zoho (still all web based and free) has the spreadsheet, document and presentation tools, but further includes a whole bunch of other stuff.

Thanks to all our users and admirers for making Zoho a part of your life! Wishing You All A Very Happy & Prosperous New Year!!

Zoho Notebook Among PC World’s Most Innovative Products of 2007

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pcworld.pngPC World announced a list of 25 most innovative products for 2007 and we are honored to see Zoho Notebook included. The list includes both software and hardware products.

PC World Says…

Innovation: Web-only app stores just about any kind of content and allows you to share it with anyone.

Benefit: More full-featured than competing online tools.

AdventNet‘s Zoho tools include everything from wiki software to customer relations management and project management applications, many of them free. Zoho Notebook (free, in public beta) continues the winning streak. You can enter text, graphics, audio, video, and embedded content from other sites onto your notebook’s pages–or use the page as a single word processing document or spreadsheet. Put together everything on a certain subject, and you’re ready to share your work with online compatriots.

As some of you may recall, Zoho Notebook was announced in Jan at DEMO conference and was open to public in May. Over the last seven months the application has been maturing rapidly with several updates and lots of regular users. Over the next few months you’ll see several updates enhancing the functionality of the application further.

We will be talking about Zoho Notebook and other Zoho applications at the Show Stoppers event in Vegas.

Blogger-speak on Zoho

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Brad Geddes at eWhisper.net says,

Zoho is on a rampage launching new web-based apps. I’m excited to see what their new mail system churns out (I don’t have an invite yet – and I’m open to testing); but their feature set is starting to blow past incumbents that have focused on niches such basecamp, or Google docs.

We will get you an invite to Zoho Mail soon, Brad.

This post written by Tom Britt in October turned up just now in our RSS feed reader. Tom says Zoho.com is ‘Online Apps on Steroids‘. And yes, we agree with him 😉

I can’t say enough about the ease of use, functionality, and scalability of this great online service. Every week, they are adding more instructional videos, testing new things, and rolling out new services.

Today I checked the site as I’m writing this post and notice they have zoho on Facebook, zoho documents on your iPhone, a zoho widget you can place on your desktop, a Microsoft Outlook plugin, a website monitoring service, and a D&B reporting service in beta. If you have a small business or a home office business like mine where you are sharing data, sales leads, or employees outside of your four walls, zoho.com can solve a lot of problems.

Rodney Rumford at FaceReviews.com, a site that reviews Facebook applications identifies Zoho as one of the ‘Business Disrupters on Facebook‘ :

Microsoft has a challenger in the ZOHO application. There is a huge marketplace for web based document creation and management and Zoho hits that.

Thanks for your kind words, folks! Your encouragement is what keeps us going. Happy Holidays & New Year!

Zoho in Lifehacker’s Awards List

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Zoho’s made it to the “Top 10 New and Improved Apps of 2007” list by Lifehacker. From the post :

Google Docs is good, but another online office suite has been rolling out upgrade afterupgrade this year, slowly, steadily, and consistently trouncing GDocs in the features department. Zoho Suite makes collaborating and editing documents, spreadsheets, presentations (and way more) better and easier straight from your browser. Most of you said you hadn’t tried Zoho because you already had a Google Account, but if collaborating and editing office documents from your browser is in your future in ’08, bite the bullet for a Zoho account and you won’t be sorry. Here’s more on how Zoho stacks up against Google Docs.

Thanks to Gina & team for making  Zoho part of their top list of web applications!

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