Email is Dead, so Facebook Unveils Email

By • Nov 19th, 2010 • Category: Blog

After years of comments by Facebook executives that email is dead, this week Facebook announced the gradual rollout of its new messaging system! So maybe email isn’t dead? The new Facebook message inbox can now unify emails, IMs, SMS, and Facebook messages in a free-flowing conversation view that is more akin to IM chats than email conversations. Facebook claims it is aiming to revolutionize the way text-based messaging is done, with more emphasis on short bursts of messages rather than cumbersome emails that are anchored by blocks of text. The tech community has of course dubbed Facebook’s new messaging system as the “Gmail Killer”.

What Facebook is trying to do is consolidate all mediums of communication: IM, email, and SMS, into a single stream of communication with one unified inbox. It’s not unlike the unified inbox that can be found in Microsoft Outlook 2010 or in many corporate UC platforms. Convergence of email, IM, SMS, and social networking is of course where everyone is heading. Facebook messaging is convenient, and it will definitely have traction amongst existing Facebook users. However, despite its hype there is little really innovative about Facebook messaging beyond its ability to integrate different channels of communication. Facebook is and will continue to face a great deal of feature pressure from the likes of Google, Microsoft, and Cisco (just to name a few), that are definitely not giving up on having the last word in how email will be used.

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