Is video chat becoming more mainstream?

People have fantasized about video chatting for a long time. Ever since the days of Star Trek when Captain Kirk talked to the other members of the USS Enterprise via video chat, people have eagerly awaited the day when we, too, would communicate that way.

Back in the ’60s, AT&T released the picture phone, which was a huge phone with some kind of camera attached. The recipient saw a constant stream of images of you that hinted at a running video. However, the picture phone never caught on as AT&T couldn’t attract enough subscribers and the technology wasn’t ready for the tech yet.

It was a good starting point, but with the advent of the internet, video calling apps began to appear. When broadband replaced dial-up and people had enough bandwidth to make a video call effectively, applications like Skype, MSN, CamFrog, etc. grew up. and some people began to explore video communication.

Between 2000 and 2008, the adoption of video calling grew steadily, but it was still an afterthought compared to text messaging, instant chat, or email. People claimed that it was not in their DNA to video chat instead of asynchronous communication. Video chat was also challenged because people said they don’t want to communicate and must focus 90-100% of their effort on maintaining eye contact. With something like texting, you don’t need as much focus on a discussion.

However, with the advent of more bandwidth, better video chat apps, better video cameras, and mobile phones, video talk adoption has skyrocketed in the last 3-4 years. Now there are web-based video applications where you don’t need to download any software. On your phone, using apps like Klip, socialcam, or viddy, you can broadcast your life in a series of video updates. Cameras for video calls are getting better and better so you can see the person you are talking to much better and people are getting used to video communication. Like all previous technologies, people are getting used to video calls and how to use them.

With people getting used to video calls, and more especially teenagers growing up in an environment where video calls are the norm, we can see that by 2020 the world will look like Star Trek! So what about you, do you like to video chat? Why or why not? Do you also think that video communication is becoming mainstream? That far.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *