BusinessWeek: Betting on the Real-Time Web
From the article:
Are people getting ahead of themselves? Possibly. Twitter has just started exploring ways to generate revenue, and its prospects are unclear. Facebook, with its blend of social networking and real-time activity, has struggled to turn rising popularity into profits. Even Borthwick, perhaps the real-time Web’s key articulator, concedes he hasn’t yet identified a blockbuster business model for any of betaworks’ firms.
But there’s a method behind the mania. In just the past couple of years, several developments have come together to make the Web more of a real-time experience: ubiquitous high-speed Internet connections; a growing number of mobile devices such as the iPhone with full Web browsers; and new Web technologies that enable instant transmission of messages and data. That mix has made always-on, real-time communications easy and addictive.
The well-known, clear paradox of Web 2.0: insanely useful sites with exploding traffic that are unable to turn viable profits.
It’s just the beginning.
That’s why, when I hear people say/tweet that Twitter and Facebook are here forever, I chuckle.
As indicated in the graph above, Twitter has exploded (and we already knew this, of course), but the backlash and waning times are inevitable.
While both are the darlings of the tech world, innovation is so fluid that it’s just a matter of time until “the next big thing” arrives, and from this article, it’s clear that brilliant people are working toward that goal.
Both Twitter and Facebook have proven themselves as powerful media platforms, as well as goldmines for marketing information, business generation, and most of all, search capabilities <especially with Facebook’s FriendFeed acquisiton today>, but the innovation threats are on-going.
These threats, of course, are good for the end-user, us, as better products are ultimately created. Ironically, the main threat to us is the future gobbling up of smaller competitors by Facebook and Twitter in order to silence any movement.
As for the FriendFeed acquistion, it’s not just for real-time search, but more so a talent acquisition, which will futhur solidfy Facebook in its battle against Twitter.
What’s Twitter’s next move?
It’s getting interesting.