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Facebook offers video chats via Skype

Facebook and Skype have formed a partnership to offer users free video calls to their friends. Within the next week or so, Facebook is set to receive an update that will allow for Skype integration.

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg announced that several new features will be included with the update including the ability to send instant messages, improved commenting, participate in a group chat, and see each other while chatting. “This is symbolic of the way we are going to do these things, building social apps on top of our social infrastructure … it’s only possible because that social infrastructure already exists,” Zuckerberg stated.

“The world generally believes that social software will be everywhere, and it will only be a matter of time before it reaches billions of people, whether through us or someone else. The driving narrative is not about wiring up the world because a lot of the interesting stuff has been done but about what cool social apps you can build now this social infrastructure is in place,” Zuckerberg added.

The ability to call friends via Skype comes only a week after Google launches Google+, which includes a video chat feature called Hangouts. “I’m not going to talk too much about Google. Lots of companies that have not traditionally looked at social networking apps – not just Google – will be trying apps. I view a lot of this as validation of how the next five years will play out – every app will be social. We just have to stay focused on building the best service for that. If we don’t, someone else will.” Zuckerberg stated.

Facebook has reached a milestone of 750 million users and continues to grow each day. In fact, the amount of content shared on Facebook has doubled in one year. On average, 4 billion items are shared on Facebook every day.

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