Facebook introduced video calling in its Messenger platform on Monday, shortly after a voice calling feature was introduced in Whatsapp, the most popular messaging platform across the globe.
At a time when only 600 million out of a total base of 1.4 billion users of Facebook use the Messenger feature, Facebook aims to bridge the gap with the new feature that is being adopted worldwide by most chat platforms.
As of now, the most popular video calling services are Apple's FaceTime, Google's Hangouts and Microsoft's Skype, all being seasoned players in the field.
However, Facebook aims to merge and smooth out the existing gap between written and face to face interactions. Users will now be able to chat and indulge in video calls at the same time, thereby ensuring a complete interaction.
However, this could also be worrisome for users who prefer to chat instead of engaging in video calling with friends on Facebook. The new feature enables anyone in your friends list to call you once you're online, and we all have a huge list of people in our lists with whom we do not prefer sharing our numbers.
Another unique feature that Facebook has introduced is the low bandwidth requirement for making video calls, which means you will be able to make calls through LTE as well as Wi-Fi. This could be really helpful if you land up in a zone with zero Wi-Fi and need to make a video call urgently. Your phone's network will be enough to support your call.
Compatible with both Android and iOS ecosystems, the video calling feature has been made available in 18 countries including the UK, with more to follow in the coming months.
While the video calling feature in itself isn't unique, it does a lot to make the Messenger a platform where you can chat with your friends, share images and videos, send them money, make apps that can be used within the Messenger platform and make voice and video calls at will.