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AI’s promise: A future free from video meetings?

Wherever you fall on the arguments for AI, you should be aware of these really cool tools that could make your video meetings less arduous.

If you’re living in the year 2023, you’ve been part of conversations digesting how artificial intelligence (AI) is changing our lives, especially work tasks with the advent of ChatGPT. You may love or hate the idea of the rapid proliferation of AI tools, but what we can all agree on is that the timing is fascinating, given the widespread Zoom fatigue, “post-pandemic.”

Will video conferencing be one arena that is so rapidly advanced that we can just send our bots into the meeting to conduct our business for us?

I could be dreaming here, but let’s talk about the various tools that could theoretically put the bots to work FOR* us, rather than AGAINST us.

*The caveat here is that middle management could be the most impacted by this scenario of streamlining meetings.

Let’s talk about the theoretical ways current tools can make it possible for us start letting the bots do meetings for us, then I’ll share tons of tools that could make it possible.

For now, they’ll all have to be duct taped together (figuratively), but for meeting haters, the bots are pretty badass.

1. Meeting preparation

If you’ve used ChatGPT, you know that you can ask AI to take walls of copy and turn them into streamlined, bullet-pointed, meaningful texts that are more useful than your gobbledy goop.

Imagine that you have a meeting today before end of business. You aren’t ready. But you could use Google Recorder to verbally put all of your thoughts into a transcript you can copy and paste into ChatGPT (or Bard, or other AI tools), and ask it to turn that text into a summary with an intro, bullet points, goals, and next steps.

You’d might be surprised that you can already do this with tools at your fingertips. It’s not perfect, but it’s better than an hour of penning your portion of the meeting.

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2. Agenda setting

There’s nothing more annoying than a meeting without an agenda where someone drones on and on. And even with an agenda, efficiency can suffer, but AI-powered agenda setting tools can automatically organize multiple agendas, prioritize topics, set time limits for items, and keep everyone on focus.

Can you imagine a bot interrupting Jerry to try to make a point? “Jerry, your time has expired, it is now time for Lisa to begin her portion of this meeting, thank you,” then mutes him. Amazing.

3. Keeping it human

When someone speaks to you, you’re supposed to look at them. It’s human nature. Whether you’re neurodivergent or just plan on sleeping through meetings, it can be a challenge, even on video, to keep your eyes looking directly into the camera for politeness.

Nvidia has created an app to maintain eye contact so long as your face is on cam. It’s pretty self-explanatory:

Eventually, we may remove ourselves from meetings and use avatars, but for now, we probably have to physically be at the video meetings. So we can at least use this tool to offer the appearance of full attention.

4. Make captions do more than just caption

Most video conferencing apps now offer live transcription (which honestly is still hit or miss), and third party apps now take those transcription and offer post-meeting notes with speaker labels and everything. Some even offer sentiment ratings of the conversation and rank who spoke the most and least.

International collaborations have always had the challenge of language barriers, but with real-time translation technologies, the barriers disappear. Advanced AI algorithms can already provide instant translation of what is being said and create immediate captions in each attendee’s native language.

Further, in any of these scenarios, it is possible to mute the speaker and ask an AI app to read the captions to you aloud in real time as well. See? Duct tape a few tools together and you’re already in business!

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5. Virtual meeting assistants

Virtual meeting assistants already exist to go to every meeting, interject with reminders, offer real-time suggestions, and facilitate smooth interactions. They can monitor discussions to identify key points being made, and offer contextual suggestions to enhance the decision making process.

These assistants can also handle admin tasks like sending relevant documents to attendees, schedule follow up meetings, and even fact check.

6. Virtual reality meeting environments

If Tim Cook or Zuckerberg have their way, we’ll all be wearing virtual reality (VR) headsets 24/7, and we’ll live in virtual worlds where we can have work meetings on the virtual beach and listen to virtual waves and have a virtual good time.

Jokes aside, AI combined with VR has the potential to transform our work meetings and make them more immersive to feel like a physical meeting space has been recreated. Spatial audio has made it possible to “walk” to a different spot in the same meeting room and hear someone “close” to you louder than someone far away.

The theory here is that video meetings could exist in a third dimension, with the idea of minimizing travel.

7. Deepfakes

We’ve already established that we can make an agenda from just our spoken word, and bots can keep a meeting on track, but under all of the aforementioned options, we still have to actually attend those meetings.

Currently, if there is enough video available of you, a likeness can already be made of it visually, and if enough audio is available of you, you can replicate the voice to be used in conjunction with video. It’s not currently the simplest process, but in the last year, it has become extremely accessible.

We interviewed “Ethon Musk” recently using a bot trained on his voice to take live questions and immediately respond.

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Further, deepfake creation isn’t impossible, and doesn’t require a computer science degree, have a look:

Why not type up notes as a script, then send in your deepfake? Zuck won’t be happy that you’re not in the mEtaVerSe, but it means you don’t have to be in a meeting, so that’s pretty cool.

Tons of AI meeting tools you can already try out:

There is a lot of overlap in the AI meeting tool space, but each of these has different options, so take a peek at all of them, because one or two are likely going to fit your needs. But note, we haven’t added any deepfake or VR apps here, just AI meeting tools:

  • Magical – the calendar that takes meeting notes for you
  • Spoke – automated AI-driven minutes, video highlights, and search
  • Dive – putting meetings on autopilot with automated notes, seamless summaries, and action items
  • Hypercontext – manage team and 1:1 meetings with collaborative agendas, meeting insights, next steps tracker, real-time feedback, and integrated notes
  • Loopin – AI meeting assistant for customer-facing teams
  • Avoma – AI meeting assistant with revenue intelligence
  • Vidlogs – for remote teams to record, transcribe, translate, search and recall discussions, as well as share any of them
  • Laxis – personal meeting assistant with real-time transcription and meeting highlights, personalized templates and topic maps, insight extraction, and quotes
  • Tactiq – real-time transcription of your meeting that is automatically sent to all attendees
  • Vowel – host, summarize, search, and share video meetings without add-ons
  • Sembly – AI team assistant transcribes, takes meting notes, generates insights, and automates follow ups
  • tl;dv – records and transcribes, but also allows you to make quick clips of highlights so anyone can quickly catch up on meetings
  • Amy – meeting preparation in seconds, straight to your calendar
  • Superpowered – AI copilot for meetings with no bots, no recordings, just really high quality notes
  • Waitroom – AI powered time-boxed speaking and off-camera listening to shift the structure of collaboration

In conclusion, AI is transforming the future of video meetings, and while in 2023, we all still have calendars filled with Zoom calls, perhaps 2024 will offer a more accessible option to just send in bots with scripts in our place that look and sound like us. A gal can dream.

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Lani is the COO and News Director at The American Genius, has co-authored a book, co-founded BASHH, Austin Digital Jobs, Remote Digital Jobs, and is a seasoned business writer and editorialist with a penchant for the irreverent.


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