The markets are in a frenzy competing for positions within the social networking space.
The battles of the BIG are being watched by us all and each is anticipating the next move. Whatever the move you can rest assured that the BIG will fuel the space with new capital and innovative applications which will only enable the small further.
We will all be even more engaged by the momentum, innovations and convergence of the space. The news below is only but few of many stories to follow over the coming months, opps, maybe weeks at the pace of change we're currently witnessing.
Google may have lost the bidding war to invest in Facebook, but it is preparing its own major assault on the social networking scene. It goes by the codename "Maka-Maka" inside the Googleplex (or, perhaps, "Makamaka").
Maka-Maka encompasses Google's grand plan to build a social layer across all of its applications. Some details about Maka-Maka have already leaked out, particularly how Google plans to use the feed engine that powers Google Reader (known internally as Reactor) to create "activity streams" for other applications akin to Facebook's news and mini feeds. But Maka-Maka goes well beyond that.
Maka-Maka will be unveiled in stages. The first peek will come in early November. As we reported previously, Google is planning to "out open" Facebook with a new set of APIs that developers can use to build apps for its social network Orkut, iGoogle, and eventually other applications as well. To recap what we wrote earlier:
Google will announce a new set of APIs on November 5 that will allow developers to leverage Google's social graph data. They'll start with Orkut and iGoogle (Google's personalized home page), and expand from there to include Gmail, Google Talk and other Google services over time. The APIs will be announced, along with as many as 50 partners that have created applications on top of the APIs. (Most of the top app developers for Facebook will be includedâ€"think RockYou, Slide, iLike, SocialMedia, etc.â€"and a few new ones as well). read more......
Developments from smaller firms are uping the game even more....
In an article this morning from The Equity Kicker, Nic Brisbourne writes Flock 1.0 beta changing the game for social networks? "I have been using the Flock 1.0 beta for a few days now and the People Sidebar feature has really got me hooked. The product is well hyped (Techcrunch 40 winner) and has lots of great features (review) - but the People Sidebar could have a significance which goes beyond this latest skirmish in the browser wars."
"Through tight integration with social media services the People Sidebar gives you an aggregated view of your network across the different services that you use. The picture below shows the top 3-4 people across my Twitter and Facebook networks."
"This reduces the importance of having all my friends on the same network. It may even eliminate it.As Facebook sweeps all before it people are struggling with compartmentalising their identity. It is problematic when your boss can see the side of you that is designed for your friends, or family. One solution to this problem is for Facebook et al to add features which allow you to show different parts of your personality to different friends - e.g. different groups can see different photos or status updates only go out to the portion of your network that you want to see them."
"Flock is now giving us a glimpse of an alternative future. Instead of having your whole network in the same service and using tools within that network to compartmentalise your identity, you can leave the different parts of your network in the services that are most appropriate for them and manage them through an aggregator service in your browser."
"This has profound implications for the value of social networks. If the approach Flock is pioneering wins out (and it is very early days yet, both in terms of number of services integrated and functionality available at the aggregate level) then I think we will see a world where there are multiple large social networks. Today it looks like there will only be space for one or two."
What Next: Expect moves by Yahoo, News Corp and more.
Our world is changing fast and each change fuels competitive innovation as the big fight for position. These moves will only enable the small to do more with the medium. What we think social networking is today compared to tomorrow will be like comparing Motorola's big brick cell phone to today's Razor.
What say you?