Facebook launched it’s email service back in 2010, supposedly to compete with Google Mail, but up to now it’s impact has been very poor. At the time, Mark Zuckerberg effectively hailed the end of email as we know it, calling the current systems ‘too slow and formal’. Two years on, that slow and formal approach is still mainstream for email users, and Facebook’s messaging service has given us nothing more but a whimper.
Whilst Outlook, Hotmail, Google Mail and Yahoo Mail continue to fight for users and market share, one element of email usage has remained consistent. With more social sharing of images, infographics, documents, presentation decks, and the increased resolution size and quality of all types of content, the average email file size has continued to grow year on year.
Most email providers have an email attachment file size limit. The Gmail maximum attachment size for example, is 25MB. Other corporate systems are often much lower, with many being restricted to 15 – 20MB limits.
These limitations often result in emails and attachments being sent via FTP systems, but where there are limitations, there are also new business opportunities.
File sharing sites such as Dropbox, Yousendit and Wetransfer have flourished over the last few years, with the latter having over 5 million users each month.
It seems logical for one of the big email providers to acquire one of the popular file sharing sites, combine it with the current email service and solve the problem of large attachment sizes.
Back to Facebook. In October 2010, Facebook acquired Drop.io, one of the most popular file sharing services at the time. Up to now there has been no word of Facebook integrating drop.io. At somepoint over the last two weeks, the drop.io site began redirecting to wlessin.com. The site is owned by Sam Lessin, the founder of Drop.io.
Mark Zuckerberg has never been shy about coming forward and proclaiming Facebook would change the way people interact online. He was correct. Back in 2010 he made a big song and dance about revolutionising email. Maybe, just maybe, he was correct again. Despite the criticism, is Facebook actually ahead of the email game?…