As much as people fear Facebook becoming The Internet (in the AOL sense), Facebook is actually really late to this party.
Apple has a mobile OS, a content and payments ecosystem and a deeply integrated set of products.
Google has a mobile OS, GMail, a search engine, a burgeoning content ecosystem and its Maps/local properties.
Amazon has a content and payments ecosystem, a limited mobile presence (Kindle Fires basically, which are of course tablets not phones) and cloud infrastructure.
All of these things are (IMHO) pieces in technology's future. Facebook really is a one trick pony (although an 8000 pound pony if you want to stretch the metaphor).
It's why you saw them panic about Instagram (if a ~2 year old company with 13 employees is an existential threat then your position is, by definition, precarious).
It's why rumours of a Facebook Phone have circulated for a year or two (eg Project Spartan) and why Facebook launched Facebook Home. It's trying to get the benefits of having a mobile OS without actually developing one and building market share (ask Microsoft how hard that is).
Facebook's strength really is being a closed silo/platform for The Internet (or a version of it at least). So buying Parse makes perfect sense as they want to extend the reach and power of the Facebook platform.
Congrats to the Parse guys.
Disclaimer: I am an engineer for Google.
When you think back to the history of social networks (AOL, Compuserv, Friendster, Myspace) these things don't have a great half-life.
They need to reinvent themselves and fast, and extending their reach isn't as much the issue as reasserting relevance through great content.
I've been keeping an eye out for the next social site where everyone is going. But, there doesn't seem to be one this time. I think social might finally be over.
Speaking of late to the party Facebook is just in the process of taking off here in Japan, it's already very popular and appears to be taking over from social networks like Mixi which have previously dominated here.
I don't have any numbers to back this up though, I'm just basing it on the change in usage I've seen here in the last two years. Certainly Facebook is alive and well here, even _useful_ if you can imagine it!
I can almost picture your friends snickering at you saying thinks like "Boy, look at vabmit, still has not realized that Facebook is so yesterday"
The only thing that sucks up more of my time is Hacker News :)
- I get its messages delivered to my phone.
- Most every party I go to has a Facebook event associated with it.
- Pretty much every picture taken with my friends goes to it (or Instagram).
I'd say that's pretty normal for most people I interact with.
"Nobody goes there anymore. It's too crowded."
Sometimes I think every social network is doomed to die in a certain number of years. Facebook simply isn't cool any more because everybody's on it now, which mean's it's ripe for disruption by a network of cool people.
People are crazy to think that Google should not just have one account that spans all their services, it makes business and technical sense; however, if you don't like G+ just don't use it- your Google account just might mean you have a blank place holder page there.
The problem is, Google wants me to unify all those, 'brand' them, and get them on G+ and Youtube, and keeps popping up annoy ware about it. One of them on Youtube recently tricked me, and I'm still not sure I selected the most appropriate option.
I appreciate Google is offering fairly granular choices, along with the choice to make no change at all. But this is just more noise and cognitive overhead I don't want to have to deal with.
I already use Google's full unified services they way they want me to with my primary account, I wish they'd just realize that and drop it with the rest.
and i can see more stuff in a facebook page, less scrolling..
i know this is subjective that people prefer different things. but it annoys me soo much that people are soo vocal about g+ being superior to facebook in design/usability sense.. i don't see it..
Whether us schmuck users like or dislike it is irrelevant. At some point, G+ will be mandatory, as someone in Slate (i think, or maybe on quora somewhere) recently wrote...
I found the article I mentioned: http://www.fastcompany.com/3004448/plus-one-proof-google-plu...
The author thinks G+ will be huge by the end of 2013, which is much too short a timeline... but otherwise I think his analysis is spot-on. Some highlights:
"Sure, there’s a social networking aspect to it, but Google Plus is really Google’s version of Google. It’s the groundwork for a level of search quality difficult to fathom based on what we know today. It’s also the Borg-like hive-queen that connects all the other Google products like YouTube, Google Maps, Images, Offers, Books, and more. And Google is starting to roll these products all up into a big ball of awesome user experience by way of Google Plus, and that snowball is starting to pick up speed and mass."
("awesome user experience" is obviously highly subjective and debatable)
"What makes Google Plus different is that it is the new backbone of a company that does search better than anyone already--something Facebook could never compete with. You use Google to search, right? Well, imagine if Google knew every piece of data about you that Facebook knew. Imagine how better equipped they would be to serve you what you are looking for. Google Plus is a way of entrenching Google’s dominance in that area, not a way of stealing Facebook users. If you are in first place, that’s the time to accelerate your lead."
and the conclusion:
"I know. You are still in the “no freaking way am I joining another social network” mode. But one day soon you will wake up and find out about that one little thing and it goes something like this:
Your buddy, “Hey have you heard about this one little thing?”
You: “Oh. My. God. That’s Awesome. That’s so Awesome. How do I get that?”
Your buddy: “Oh, you need to have a Google Plus Profile or it doesn’t work.”"
Its easy to say Zuckerberg did the right thing in hindsight of course.
Google had a social network that launched in 2004 as well, at almost the exact same time as Facebook -- Orkut.
Recall that Google bought Android and YouTube when they were small, Google bought Where2 (Google Maps) when it was small, Google bought Writely (Google Docs) when it was small, Yahoo bought Flickr when it was small, Google bought MetaWeb (those knowledge cards on the right of the search result page) and ITA (flight search) when they were medium-sized, Twitter bought Summize (Twitter Search) when it was small, and Conde Nast bought Reddit when it was small.
The key seems to be to either let the acquired company continue to do its thing without interference or to fold it into a high-priority project within the acquirer, though.
my oh my, what a waste. anyone outside of brazil using this? why is LP keeping this around and not shutting this down after migrating all users to g+? focus, focus, focus?
At least Facebook won't be biased about what mobile platform to support, it can support all other platforms without focusing on specific Android.
I use Parse as my backend for my iOS apps and it is absolutely useful. They provided a great service and the mPaAS approach to developing and managing mobile apps data and services is revolutionary.
1. They shut down their acquired companies and their products on many occasions that many people are dependent upon
2. They shut down a handful of Google tools many people are dependent upon
3. They even close people's Google accounts.
Use their service, yes, but trust them after all of this dents they made? maybe.
The weight of their actions is so great, I can't even begin to talk about matters in relation to trust on their side. It's just _hard_.
I'm glad Facebook acquired Parse.
why does buying parse makes perfect sense for facebook? you already mentioned they are doing fine there, with their little piece of the internet in their app. why would they want to support 60,000 apps that does other things out of their little corner?
....oh, will they bait and switch them? all 60,000 apps forced to login via facebook only next month?
> Q: Will Parse apps have to use Facebook functionality? No.