Platform Wars Are in Full Force

Last night the MySpace platform went live. This follows the launch of Bebo and Google will begin providing support to OpenSocial developers. Beginning this week Google will be hosting all-day “hackathons” at the Googleplex in Mountain View, CA. If you make it to these workshops, “Orkut Product Managers and Engineers will be on hand to review your application and add it to the initial Orkut application directory.”

They hype is big and now we are waiting to see what type of growth these applications experience. According to the official OpenSocial blog, applications will go live in the last week of February. Also, Google has announced that version 0.7 of OpenSocial will go live tonight and this is the same version that will be available across the multiple platforms. The true test of the platform wars will be the viral application growth. This was the most impressive part of the Facebook platform.

I have a feeling that we are also going to witness developer exhaustion as they spread their resources across the wide number of platforms currently available. I wonder if Red Bull will be enough to support the thousands of developers building applications for the social platforms. In less than 9 months, the social networks have opened up their platforms following Facebook’s steps and now we are at a new phase of social application development.

Some are wondering if this will be the year that social platforms completely open up and make user information portable between networks. I don’t see that happening anytime soon given the hype surrounding the platforms in general but perhaps we will witness a miracle. Additionally, it will be interesting to see if the launch of competing platforms will stunt Facebook’s rapid growth in user base. How do you foresee these new platforms impacting the F8 platform?

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