Google is the “killer” service company par excellence. At Mountain View, they like to experiment a lot, especially when there are market gaps that may be getting filled. Perhaps less so now, but for a time Google launched many platforms that it then ruthlessly buried, which has given rise to sites like Google’s Graveyard, something the company itself showed as a joke in the face of Halloween.
Most of the products that Google has killed are relatively well known, and at some point they have become quite used, even if only for a short time. However, there is one company that has another good graveyard of applications, or rather a graveyard of clones. It is none other than Facebook, and as in the case of the search engine company, the fact that it exists is not painful, but serves very well to explain its strategy of expansion into new niches and markets.
The Facebook graveyard apps we’ll see have one common feature in almost every case: they were born to try to reduce the success of some fledgling platform that Zuckerberg’s hadn’t pioneered.
This was the case with Facebook Camera, an application designed to compete with Instagram, which was launched weeks after Facebook’s purchase of the social network became official. Once the deal was closed at the legal level (there were problems with some competition regulators), Facebook Camera was short-lived. But it’s the best example of how Zuckerberg, by buying or crushing competitors, wants to be everywhere.
Snapchat became so popular that in addition to Poke, Facebook tried to compete with two other applications, Slingshot and Riff. The first one was a communication application in which photos were sent to friends, who had to send something to see them, after which they could react. Riff was even more focused on competing with the Stories, but from a point of view of making collaborative videos with more friends. It didn’t come to anything either. Snapchat 3 – Facebook 0.
The same happened with Rooms, the application with which Facebook wanted to enter the world of applications where they could maintain their anonymity (they didn’t even ask to log in with company credentials). With this one, it was not in special competition with any other. So were others like Facebook Moments.
Zuckerberg will try to win by all means: launching applications that compete with the successful ones, buying them (Instagram and WhatsApp and try with Snapchat) or integrating their functions in existing ones (Snapchat Stories on Instagram)
In recent years, they have re-launched applications to compete with other successful social networks. This is the case of Bonfire, a competitor of the current HouseParty. Hobbi was launched to compete with Pinterest, and has just closed down. The same fate has followed Lasso, which Zuckerberg even talked about in internal conversations as his bid to compete with Tiktok in countries where the Chinese social network was not yet very powerful. All these apps are now buried.