Facebook, Skype team up for video calling to compete with Apple's FaceTime

Posted:
in General Discussion edited January 2014
Facebook announced on Wednesday that it is partnering with Skype to bring video calling to the social networking service, a feature that will compete with Apple's own FaceTime.



The new video calling feature was unveiled by Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg at a presentation at his company's headquarters on Wednesday. It was unveiled alongside two other new features: group chat, and a redesigned chat and friends list interface.



Zuckerberg said Facebook's partnership with an outside company like Skype, which was recently bought by Microsoft, is important because it represents his company's belief that individual applications are best created by those who specialize in them. He said implementing Skype technology is a better option than Facebook attempting to create its own sub-standard services.



"We build the infrastructure, we're years ahead in wiring it up, and we're going to enable folks to build world-class apps on top of that," he said of his company's strategy.



Facebook engineer named Philip Su gave a run-down of the new video call feature. One click to a video call button in a Web browser brings up a call. Wednesday's live demonstration of the service was conducted on a Mac.



Su showed how the video chat is enabled by downloading an applet in a browser with just two clicks. He said most users on a broadband connection should be able to download and enable the service within 30 seconds.



Video chat will begin rolling out today, and Facebook has touted the ease of use with Skype integration, which will make it possible for non-technical users to engage in video chat.



"No separate accounts, no separate websites to go to," Su said. "The download is small and easy."







Of course, Apple has its own video chat protocol designed to be simple and easy for end users: FaceTime. That Apple-only service is available on iOS devices with forward-facing cameras, namely the iPhone 4, iPad 2, fourth-generation iPod touch. It can also be used on Macs with Apple's FaceTime application.



But while FaceTime is available on mobile devices like the iPhone and iPad, Zuckerberg said Wednesday that Skype video chat in Facebook is a Web-only feature "for now," meaning it will not be available in Facebook's iPhone application.



Zuckerberg promised more products set to launch in the coming weeks and months. He referred to this period as Facebook's "launching season" of 2011.



One product likely to launch is an official Facebook application for iPad that is said to be in the works. Last month, The New York Times said that the social network would release an application optimized for the 9.7-inch display of the iPad.



Facebook is also said to be at work on a secret HTML5-based Web application platform dubbed "Project Spartan." One rumor last month claimed that Apple is helping Facebook to the development of the project.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 67
    tallest skiltallest skil Posts: 43,399member
    As long as they use the same protocols so it's compatible, I'm fine.



    OH WAIT, NO ONE CARES ABOUT ACTUALLY BEING COMPATIBLE.
  • Reply 2 of 67
    applestudapplestud Posts: 367member
    This hardly competes with Facetime. Seeing as how Apple doesn't make any money off FaceTime, they probably couldn't care less which videochat service you use. FaceTime exists so there is always, at the very least, a built-in, easy to use service. Apple built Facetime in order to not depend on anyone else for key services.
  • Reply 3 of 67
    irnchrizirnchriz Posts: 1,591member
    FaceTime is BUILT IN to every (current) iOS device and every Mac running Lion, plus you don't have to give Facebook or Microsoft any of your information.
  • Reply 4 of 67
    cloudgazercloudgazer Posts: 2,161member
    This is NOTHING to do with facetime. This is aimed squarely at Google+'s 'video hangout' feature.
  • Reply 5 of 67
    tallest skiltallest skil Posts: 43,399member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by irnchriz View Post


    FaceTime is BUILT IN to every (current) iOS device and every Mac running Lion,



    But you don't have to use it.



    Quote:

    plus you don't have to give Facebook or Microsoft any of your information.



    To use video, you do. For both of them. And FaceTime. It's the same all around.
  • Reply 6 of 67
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by irnchriz View Post


    FaceTime is BUILT IN to every (current) iOS device and every Mac running Lion, plus you don't have to give Facebook or Microsoft any of your information.



    Apple has your email address and/or you phone number credit card info and other things if you use facetime also.
  • Reply 7 of 67
    tgollytgolly Posts: 7member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by AppleStud View Post


    This hardly competes with Facetime. Seeing as how Apple doesn't make any money off FaceTime, they probably couldn't care less which videochat service you use. FaceTime exists so there is always, at the very least, a built-in, easy to use service. Apple built Facetime in order to not depend on anyone else for key services.



    I would have to totally disagree. It does compete with Factime. The more users Facebook gets to use Skype the more relevant the Skype platform becomes. What it does is marginalize Facetime. People who may not have used Skype in the past will not get a account and eventually use it elsewhere too. By that I mean on all of their devices. It is huge for Skype.



    There are currently 700 million Facebook users. If Skype captures just a small fraction of the users that will be HUGE for the platform and again will relegate Facetime to only a specialized product used on Apple's iOS devices.



    Do you really think that iTunes would be such a monster platform if it were not on Windows? Windows addresses the largest user base and that is the advantage that Skype has over Facetime. Apple needs to free Facetime from apple only products. Then it too can become dominant like iTunes.
  • Reply 8 of 67
    tgollytgolly Posts: 7member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by AppleStud View Post


    This hardly competes with Facetime. Seeing as how Apple doesn't make any money off FaceTime, they probably couldn't care less which videochat service you use. FaceTime exists so there is always, at the very least, a built-in, easy to use service. Apple built Facetime in order to not depend on anyone else for key services.



    I would have to totally disagree. It does compete with Factime. The more users Facebook gets to use Skype the more relevant the Skype platform becomes. What it does is marginalize Facetime. People who may not have used Skype in the past will now get a account and eventually use it elsewhere too. By that I mean on all of their devices. It is huge for Skype.



    There are currently 700 million Facebook users. If Skype captures just a small fraction of the users that will be HUGE for the platform and again will relegate Facetime to only a specialized product used on Apple's iOS devices.



    Do you really think that iTunes would be such a monster platform if it were not on Windows? Windows addresses the largest user base and that is the advantage that Skype has over Facetime. Apple needs to free Facetime from apple only products. Then it too can become dominant like iTunes.
  • Reply 9 of 67
    bongobongo Posts: 158member
    I would be more concerned if I were Gmail.

    Apple?Not so much.
  • Reply 10 of 67
    tgollytgolly Posts: 7member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by AppleStud View Post


    This hardly competes with Facetime. Seeing as how Apple doesn't make any money off FaceTime, they probably couldn't care less which videochat service you use. FaceTime exists so there is always, at the very least, a built-in, easy to use service. Apple built Facetime in order to not depend on anyone else for key services.



    I would have to totally disagree. It does compete with Factime. The more users Facebook gets to use Skype the more relevant the Skype platform becomes. What it does is marginalize Facetime. People who may not have used Skype in the past will now get a account and eventually use it elsewhere too. By that I mean on all of their devices. It is huge for Skype.



    There are currently 700 million Facebook users. If Skype captures just a small fraction of the users that will be HUGE for the platform and again will relegate Facetime to only a specialized product used on Apple's iOS devices.



    Do you really think that iTunes would be such a monster platform if it were not on Windows? Windows addresses the largest user base and that is the advantage that Skype has over Facetime. Apple needs to free Facetime from apple only products. Then it too can become dominant like iTunes.
  • Reply 11 of 67
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by AppleStud View Post


    Seeing as how Apple doesn't make any money off FaceTime, they probably couldn't care less which videochat service you use. FaceTime exists so there is always, at the very least, a built-in, easy to use service. Apple built Facetime in order to not depend on anyone else for key services.



    I think this is true. If Facebook's thing works better, great. They'll need a mobile device to run it on, it doesn't drive anyone to a competing platform, so why should Apple care?



    However, since MS owns Skype and Ballmer runs MS, I have every confidence they can still screw this up.



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by tgolly View Post


    Apple needs to free Facetime from apple only products. Then it too can become dominant like iTunes.



    Facetime is an open platform. Didn't you get the memo?
  • Reply 12 of 67
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by tgolly View Post


    I would have to totally disagree. It does compete with Factime. The more users Facebook gets to use Skype the more relevant the Skype platform becomes. What it does is marginalize Facetime. People who may not have used Skype in the past will not get a account and eventually use it elsewhere too. By that I mean on all of their devices. It is huge for Skype.



    There are currently 700 million Facebook users. If Skype captures just a small fraction of the users that will be HUGE for the platform and again will relegate Facetime to only a specialized product used on Apple's iOS devices.



    Do you really think that iTunes would be such a monster platform if it were not on Windows? Windows addresses the largest user base and that is the advantage that Skype has over Facetime. Apple needs to free Facetime from apple only products. Then it too can become dominant like iTunes.



    this is a big win for microsoft. don't count them out yet. unless ms screws up skype (quite possible) then facetime has no chance. the competition will be google.
  • Reply 13 of 67
    dr_lhadr_lha Posts: 236member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Mister Snitch View Post


    Facetime is an open platform. Didn't you get the memo?



    O RLY?



    http://daringfireball.net/linked/201...etime-standard
  • Reply 14 of 67
    apple ][apple ][ Posts: 8,697member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by majortom1981 View Post


    Apple has your email address and/or you phone number credit card info and other things if you use facetime also.



    I trust Apple with my info. I'm not on Facebook and I don't trust them with my info and I don't trust Google either. They're advertising companies and that's where they get their profit from.
  • Reply 15 of 67
    tru_canuktru_canuk Posts: 81member
    Best thing for Apple to do to compete with this service is two things;



    1. Release Facetime for Windows platform



    2. Integrate Facebook video chat into Facetime so users will have an option to chat with users using iDevices and / or Facebook users



    On a side note, I always believed Apple should've bought Skype & integrate it into iOS & Lion.
  • Reply 16 of 67
    I can see where this could be aimed at facetime, but I think this has more to do with google+ then anything else. Someone said google+ could become a "Facebook killer" but all Facebook would need to do is add in some of google+ features and problem solved. I think facebook wants to squash out google+ before it has a chance to really take off, while quieting FaceTime is just an added bonus. My thoughts.
  • Reply 17 of 67
    mplaisancemplaisance Posts: 105member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by majortom1981 View Post


    Apple has your email address and/or you phone number credit card info and other things if you use facetime also.



    Actually you can use ANY email (it does not have to be your Apple ID) to do a FaceTime call. As long as you register that email with Apple, your done! No CC no info just your email!
  • Reply 18 of 67
    tallest skiltallest skil Posts: 43,399member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by tru_canuk View Post


    2. Integrate Facebook video chat into Facetime so users will have an option to chat with users using iDevices and / or Facebook users



    Or how about Facebook actually using open standards instead of proprietary crap?
  • Reply 19 of 67
    brucepbrucep Posts: 2,823member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post


    But you don't have to use it.







    To use video, you do. For both of them. And FaceTime. It's the same all around.



    I hate Facebook and all the social kissing kssiy stuff.

    i have like 9000 friends who all so needy .



    FACETIME IS GREAT .



    9
  • Reply 20 of 67
    mdriftmeyermdriftmeyer Posts: 7,304member
    Quote:

    "We build the infrastructure, we're years ahead in wiring it up, and we're going to enable folks to build world-class apps on top of that," he said of his company's strategy.



    Sorry, Facebook is not infrastructure and it's not world class app building.



    The infrastructure is what allows Facebook to exist. That's the OS, WebKit/Gecko/HTML5/CSS2,3/WebGL/OpenGL/WebCL/OpenCL/TCP/IP/Sockets/Network Communication Standards/Telco backbone, etc.



    Skype doesn't exist without all that infrastructure and standards bodies ratifying VOIP specs, etc.
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