First, there is a quote from Dave McClure’s post Subscriptions are the New BLACK. (+ why Facebook, Google, & Apple will own your wallet by 2015)
Well at this point i hope you’ve pieced it all together. The key to success — one might even say DOMINANCE — in payment systems is to begin with the foundation of frequent-use products, so that users won’t forget their passwords. Whether intentional or not, Facebook has played this game to perfection. Not too far behind is Apple with iTunes, iPhone, and other related frequent-use media & entertainment products, and an App Store that people use regularly. And even Google has a shot here, with both Gmail and YouTube as two very large, frequent-use products, along with the upcoming Android platform. Twitter is probably a dark-horse here, but if user #’s continue to improve they could also have a shot. And i’d also keep an eye on Skype too, which still has a lot of frequent users and value.
Second: Facebook’s announcements at the f8 conference. As summarized by Mark Zuckerberg:
We are building a Web where the default is social.
In more details, it means several technical implementations which could, in the long term, change completely the way you interact with the Internet:
– Social plugins: A set of plugins that will allow websites to better interact with you as well as allowing you to share more. The most visible is the Like plugin, with which you can instantly highlight content you like, linked back to your Facebook wall and profile. The Like plugin is different because you don’t need to specifically connect to Facebook to use it; you are automatically recognized if you have connected to Facebook previously. Interestingly, websites can also use your public details to customize their contents to your public profile.
– The Graph API, which standardizes the Facebook social graph and makes it easier for developers to read and write data with Facebook. This should happen in real time using webhooks. Looking at the current specification, there is no indication that Facebook Credit is part of the current roll out, however….
Facebook could have set itself to become a major player in payment: