In the social battle between Facebook and Google, tomorrow may serve as the company’s defining moment, marking the release of the final defense against Google who is also preparing to unleash their final assault on Facebook. While there is an ongoing discussion about the war over search, there’s a more significant short-term play: if Facebook can convince Gmail users to leave the service and use a Facebook-created mail service, Google could end up looking extremely vulnerable.
The naysayers suggest that Facebook couldn’t take on a company who generates over 16 times more revenue each year, only further highlighting the fact that this is truly a David versus Goliath battle. In support of the naysayers, this is not a winner-take-all battle, however Google is publicly annoyed with Facebook’s growing dominance. It’s too easy to list the numerous reasons that Goliath could win the fight: 16 times the revenue, more than 12 times the employees, a nearly-monopolistic grip on the search market, and the communication data of more than 100 million Gmail users and millions more Google Voice and Chat users.
All signs suggest however that we are on the eve of a new era for Facebook: one in which they truly aim to become a central component of our daily communication through the launch of a service which every modern professional is already dependent. Many have speculated how Facebook’s service will be able to destroy all those who came before it:
- I argued that the new Facebook mail could also serve as another central developer platform
- Just about everyone also suggested that Facebook Mail could leverage our relationships to determine whether or not a message is important, in turn filtering out a lot of the noise that currently exists in our inbox
- There are many more theories going around as well
Regardless of what is announced, there is a feeling that this is one of the largest announcements Facebook has made in a very long time. Most significant is that the majority of us spend countless hours wading through our email on a daily basis, most still struggling to get it under control. While it’s doubtful that Facebook will be able to single-handedly solve the problem of information overload, there’s no doubt that many are hoping that Facebook will release something to help.
For many, tomorrow could serve as the moment when Facebook shifts from being a secondary channel of communication to a primary channel of communication. While we have no details about the product as of now, the anticipation is great. We’ll be there to cover it live as usual.