Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Skype + Facebook Promise "Effortless Video Calling"

Facebook and Skype announced deep integration providing "the easiest one-click way to get connected via video with friends and colleagues." The companies said their partnership will make video calling widely pervasive and easily accessible for billions of people.

Group video chat is not initially supported, although Facebook is also announcing a text-based group chat. Development was carried out by joint teams. Skype-out services will be offered to reach users who are not on Facebook.

Facebook said the Skype video integration is an example of a social app running over its infrastructure. The company sees itself as the social platform for reach an audience that now reaches 750 million users.

Skype noted that is now carrying over 300 million minutes per month and at peak times over 50% of traffic is video traffic.

Skype said its most important goal is to become as ubiquitous as possible, rather than just promoting its own interface.

The companies said Microsoft's upcoming acquisition of Skype, which was announced after the joint Skype+Facebook integration was already underway, was not a factor in pursuing this partnership.

  • In May, Microsoft announced plans to acquire Skype for $8.5 billion in cash -- its biggest acquisition to date. The deal is still pending.
  • MySpace noted that it signed a similar agreement with Skype for social video calling in 2007.