Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg says its time for video, so forget text and photos

Forget sending text messages, instant messages or even photos, says Mark Zuckerberg, the co-founder and chief executive of Facebook, the world’s largest social media company.

Pretty soon videos will be the main way we will share our lives with each other online, and soon after that it will be 360-degree videos of “whole scenes” so our family and friends can be completely immersed in our lives, from afar.

Speaking at the Mobile World Congress, the mobile phone industry’s annual trade show, Mr Zuckerberg said that faster mobile networks and new virtual-reality technology were driving radical changes in social media that Facebook was beginning to witness.

“Ten or 15 years ago most of what we shared and consumed online was text. Then it was photos, especially since we got smartphones with cameras. And now it’s really becoming video. The mobile networks are fast enough that most people can upload video and have it not be a terrible experience. As the networks get better and better that’s going to be more and more of what you share.

“Over the next few years videos is going to be a huge thing. But that’s not the end of the line. There’s always a more immersive way that you want to share and experience the moments in your life.

“What I think we’re going to get to next, and I think this will happen sooner than we think, is the ability to share whole scenes, not just a little 2D video of something that you care about,” said Mr Zuckerberg, speaking at a keynote address on the first day of the Congress.

Of course, he would say that.

His company spent $US2 billion in 2014, buying the virtual-reality headset company Oculus, which had already partnered with the Korean electronics giant Samsung to make the Gear VR, an attachment for mobile phones that let people watch completely immersive videos.

Here at Mobile World Congress, Samsung just announced a camera for ordinary consumers, the Gear 360, that shoots videos that capture footage in every direction at once, that can be watched in the Gear VR. LG, too, announced a 360-degree camera and a headset capable of watching them.

“Even with just the Gear VR, there have been a million hours of 360 (degree) video that have been watched. On Facebook there are more than a million people who watch 360 videos everyday. So that’s happening,” Mr Zuckerberg said.

John Davidson is attending Mobile World Congress in Barcelona as a guest of Samsung


By John Davidson
Posted on: http://www.afr.com/technology/facebook-to-make-a-360degree-turn-says-zuckerberg-20160223-gn1h2w#ixzz41c6uJJ2G