WhatsApp Adding Video Communications, After Voice?
Facebook-owned WhatsApp, after having introduced voice communications, now seems set to add video communications. That illustrates a pattern we now have become quite familiar with. A would-be disruptor enters a market, at the low end, and is dismissed as “a toy.”
The new app or service does not have anywhere near the features of the incumbent products, but the new product offers high enough value to solve a problem, generally at very low cost (free app, for example), or at least costs noticeably lower than the market level (cable TV voice, high speed access).
Over time, the new product adds more features. One day, the attacking product is feature by feature equivalent to the incumbent products. That pattern of disruptive innovation now clearly can be seen at WhatsApp, transitioning from an instant messaging product to a full communications platform.