With over 750 million active monthly users,
Facebook has a solid position in the social networking industry. But with
Google+ on its way, many are wondering if it could be a true rival to Facebook.
Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg answered
this question yesterday at the introduction of Facebook video chat, saying that
many websites are becoming more social these days, but added that Facebook is
unique in that it specializes in socializing.
Zuckerberg said that the last five years have been
about connecting people while the next five years will be about connecting
apps, and that many companies will look into making their apps more social. He
also added that Google isn't the only company releasing a social app, but
companies like Netflix have expressed interest in doing so as well. It's all
about who will build the best app, because if one doesn't, the other will, he
After mentioning that he has spent little time on Google+,
Zuckerberg went on to explain why Facebook is the number one social network,
and why it will likely remain that way. He has four reasons for thinking this
way: Facebook is strictly a social network, people don't want to manage groups,
everyone is already on Facebook, and Facebook's video chat is more appealing. However,
Zuckerberg never directly spoke of Google by name when discussing these points.
"Companies doing one thing will always do
better than companies doing a million things," said Zuckerberg.
Google, for example, has invested in search,
music, mobile phones, advertising, etc.
As far as managing groups go, Zuckerberg believes
that it's time consuming and very focused. With Facebook's group feature,
people within a group know whom they are grouped with. But Google's Circles
doesn't allow people to know how they are categorized and with whom. Everything
revolves around what you're sharing with whom, which, Zuckerberg believes is
An obvious advantage that Facebook has is its 750
million users. Many people already have most of their friends and family on
Facebook, and will be reluctant to switch to another network if all of these
people do not go with them.
Facebook just announced its video
calling feature yesterday, which is a joint venture with Skype
that allows users to have one-on-one video chats. Zuckerberg believes this is a
better system than a multi-person video chat (much like Google+'s Hangouts,
which allows users to video chat with up to 10 people at one time) because
"the vast majority of chat is 1 to 1 today."
Whether Zuckerberg is right or wrong about any of
the above will play out in time, but for now, he doesn't have to worry much
since Google has admitted that Google+ needs some work in certain areas, such
the service business-friendly.
Google Group Product Manager Christian Oestlien
noted on his Google+ page that the way businesses communicate is different from
how individuals communicate, and that this is something Google is working on.
"We want to create an optimal experience for
both," said Oestlien. "We have a great team of engineers actively
building an amazing Google+ experience for businesses, and we will have
something to show the world later this year."
In fact, Oestlien discourages businesses from
making Google+ pages in its current format, and will shut down any businesses
trying to connect with users at this time.
While Google+ won't launch anything
business-friendly for a bit, there is a small pilot program that businesses can
sign up for to test the waters.
quote: Or you could keep an actual address book of friends and family, and I don't know, give them an actual phone call instead of just taking the lazy way out and messaging them.
quote: It's a 1000 times better to talk to people in person
quote: Rather go out and do something instead of sitting in one place.
quote: Yeah but what happened to just calling family everyone once and a while
quote: or going to dinner with your friends every one in awhile
quote: I don't need a web application to know what is happening with my close friends and family.
quote: I am an Engineer
quote: Maybe it just because you are using a computer and it varies depending on the persons microphone/speaker/webcam
quote: Did you stop to think that a lot of people don't want to communicate online
quote: I take one look at all the people on Facebook and just shake my head.
quote: I was talking about the hypocrism between addicted video gamers and people staying glued to Facebook 10 hours a day
quote: Facebook was ruined after it was opened up to non-college applicants.
quote: IMO, google needs to invest in better placement of their apps or somehow show users what is available.
quote: "Companies doing one thing will always do better than companies doing a million things," said Zuckerberg.