Facebook has just announced a major new feature that it’s launching Skype: video calling. The announcement opened up with Zuckerberg bringing our attention to the sharing statistics of Facebook, which appear to be doubling each year. Additionally he added that a total of four billion individual pieces of information are shared every day.
Mark Zuckerberg also announced group chat, but it’s the video-chat feature that will probably get the most attention, mostly because it is being rolled out on the heels of Google+’s Hangouts. GMSV’s quick reaction to the demonstration, Facebook touts it as easy (you click one button) on a platform “where your friends already are,” but it doesn’t allow for group video chats like Hangouts does. Still, Zuckerberg and Skype CEO Tony Bates touted one-on-one chat, which is available starting today, as important and something “people will want to do.”
The video chat capability works by a plugin in the browser, which downloads when the user attempts to make a video call. The setup time is said to take 10-20 seconds, depending on the users Internet speed and takes a total of two clicks to go from IM chat to video chat. The UI of the feature follows the design of Facebook – very minimalist and despite being powered by Skype, doesn’t feel like a Skype invention.
Important notes: you don’t need a seperate account to use it. “this is by far the easiest way to get connected by video”.
When you click call, you approve an applet, it will download an app within a browser.
Skype CEO Tony Bates took the stage to make a few comments. One important thing he noted: Skype is talking with Facebook about having some paid products available through the web format.
One may ask what is in it for Skype and when Skype CEO Tony Bates was quizzed about how the company was going to profit from the partnership, he responded that a long with giving Skype a reach to 750 million users, there could be a future in Skype paid products on Facebook.
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