Many new technologies, like video calling, are floated as futuristic for decades before actually gaining traction in the real world.
Video calling was visible in our television choices right from James Bond to the Jetsons.
Like many seemingly simple but transformative technologies, video calling has come through on all of its promises and more.
Early day video calling was done in a boardroom with thousands of dollars worth of specialised equipment. It was clunky, slow, immobile and expensive.
Fast forward to 2019 — a time of internet speeds booming, smartphones for all and a camera on every device you could imagine.
Almost all of the friction that made this technology a challenge has been removed.
Video calling — are people actually using it?
The answer is yes and in a big way.
For businesses, numerous studies point to about one third of all businesses using this tech as a key functionality of their operation.
For individuals using one of the myriad of apps from Facebook, FaceTime, Google Duo or Hangouts and so on, millennials are surprisingly leading the charge with almost a 200 per cent increase in use over the past three years.
One quarter of these millennials say they use video calling on a daily basis.
All other age groups are also growing at an exceptional rate with data showing a continual update in both the people starting to use it and the frequency of their use.
The reasons for growth in this area are pretty clear cut.
Aside from the technology being more accessible and these services essentially being offered free of charge, there are also social reasons.
People are becoming more comfortable sharing themselves in video, photo and voice. Simply a scroll through most people’s social media profile will show you this.
With all of this in mind, if we already own the right technology and the service is essentially free, will we continue to see growth in video calling into the future?