As Facebook Video Comes Calling To All Profiles, Will People Actually Embrace It?

Facebook has started pushing out a major update to their video calling service that will put it front and center on every single profile on the site. Since Facebook formed a partnership with Skype last summer, video calling hasn’t really taken off and it got me thinking about it in general. Will it ever be really embraced by the masses?

It looks brilliant in adverts and is one of those sexy tools that companies use to sell their products, but personally, I haven’t made one video call over the past year and I don’t know anybody else who does. Families might use Skype to see their grandchildren on the other side of the world, and some techies may swear by video calls, but is the rest of the world ready to embrace video calling or are we just seeing a fad that will come and go?

Facebook Update

Although Facebook joined forces with Skype as a response to Google+’s hangouts, I don’t think anybody is using the service. That is mostly because it’s been buried in the chat settings and isn’t easy to access. As a response to some of the traction Google hangouts has been getting and the launch last week of Airtime, Facebook started rolling out a more prominent placement for the call button. It now sits on every single profile on the site and users are only a click away from making a video call.

The Services

There are now more ways to communicate by video calling than ever before. You can do it on your desktop, through apps, on Facebook, on mobiles and through new social services. Apple present Facetime as one of the main selling points for their iPhones, but I know very few people who actually use it.

Although Google+ has been a massive failure, one area where it has been getting a small amount of traction is Hangouts.

Just last week, Airtime launched and the service pulls in Facebook information, allowing you to chat with friends via video while watching content together.

People Don’t Want To Become Video Stars

The web is incredibly social at the moment and people spend most of their time updating their statuses, sharing photos and commenting on actions of others. Despite a huge amount of video content on the likes of Youtube and within apps, most people just don’t want to be video stars. At least 90% of the population are happy sitting behind their keyboards and among a younger generation, phone calls are becoming rare as people communicate instantly via text.

To start a video chat with a friend is a huge commitment and one that means you have to look your best. Some friends will use these new services, but the vast majority of people won’t. Technology will continue to improve and give us better services than the ones above. However, the problem is that what we have already is pretty slick, but people still don’t use them. There will always be a place for video chat, but the vast majority of people just don’t want to spend their time on camera no matter, how good the service is.

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