The End of ‘Social’ Media: According To Prominent Investor Fred Wilson

Social media has been a prominent feature of the internet over the past decade, as more startups and companies try to crack the perfect way to connect with friends, family and random strangers.

Facebook and Twitter appear to be nearest to optimal for large scale social networking, while apps like Instagram,YouTube, Foursquare, and Pinterest offer niche social experiences in photos, videos, location and media.

According to prominent internet investor Fred Wilson, “the social media phase of the Internet ended” in 2014, and it is now the time of messaging. Wilson claims social media ended a few years ago, but in 2014 it was even more prominent.

The acquisition of WhatsApp by Facebook for $19 billion accelerated the rate of growth in the messaging market, alongside the major growth of apps like WeChat, Facebook Messenger, LINE and Snapchat.


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There is another change happening in the technology world: the amount of user information people and organizations hold. Services like Snapchat, Yik Yak and Facebook’s new service Rooms all work by allowing anonymity.

Several other trends are bound to take the internet by storm in the next few years, according to Wilson the “rental economy” will continue to grow, with services like Uber and Airbnb leading the charge in this field.

File names also disappeared with the growth on Dropbox, Spotify, Netflix and Kindle, removing the need to download and move storage around in a computer. This is questionable, considering anyone on PC still has to live with file names for games and applications.

Outside of the internet, Wilson cites the duopoly on mobile as a stable entity, which will most likely not change in the next few years. Google needs to work on making sure its own vision of Android is realized in China, especially by Xiaomi who is fast becoming the most important mobile company.

The changes in 2014 from Wilson are less about 2014 and more about the changes in tech over the course of five years, just starting to show in 2014.




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