Soon after Google‘s entrance into social media with Google+, Facebook has announced a new video chat feature that allows people to set up video chatting in just a couple clicks, and then video chat any friend through a Skype plug-in. Just 24 hours later, Facebook video chat is already being compared to Google’s video chat and new hangout feature, with mixed reviews about which is better, more functional, and easier to use.
However, the most interesting thing that Zuckerberg had to say was not the announcement of video chat (after all, I already have Skype, Facetime, and Gchat video…why do I need another video service?), but his discussion of the future of social media and Facebook as a platform.
“It’s about active users, not registered users” said Zuckerberg, arguing that Facebook didn’t announce when they hit 750 million users because “it’s not the statistic we think is important.” An interesting point, especially because for the past 7 years since Facebook’s invention, Facebook has been
gloating about announcing their user growth almost monthly.
But Zuckerberg makes an interesting point because for the past 7 years, Facebook has been working to get every demographic involved in social media, arguing its value and potential uses. Now, we’re all sold on it! With 750 million users, the population of Facebook is more than double the population of the United States. Going forward, Facebook must work to get users sharing things, interacting with their friends, uploading pictures and videos, liking things….etc! That is why Facebook is introducing things like video chat and an updated version of Facebook chat (which, by the way, looks eerily similar to Gchat).
You can view the full press conference here, which is actually worth viewing if you have a free hour. Zuckerberg makes some interesting claims about how much people will be sharing in 3-5 years, and does a neat paper folding trick!
What do you think of the new Facebook video chat feature? Do you think that Skype will end up actually benefiting from this partnership? Will Google or Facebook come out on top in the video chat race?