BACK WHEN THE SUN almost shined, both Facebook and Google announced an extension to their services known as “connect” – this means taking your online identity with you all over the web.
Yesterday, in a strange coincidence, both services were launched simultaneously.
Mark Zuckerberg left a blog on its site saying that starting from yesterday, “You'll see prompts for Facebook Connect at websites across the Internet and have the opportunity to take your Facebook profile information, friends and privacy preferences to your favorite sites.”
Facebook cites some of the places you can use this connect service including TechCrunch, CNN, The Forum, vLane, Howcast and Govit – allowing the user to leave blogs, comments, opinions and videos alongside their online persona.
The social networking site also offers the opportunity to expand the sites users can ‘connect’ with by getting in touch with their favourite website’s developers.
On the very same day, Google announced the arrival of Google Friend Connect, the beta version of the connect service.
Google said yesterday that this service is for those looking to add a “dash of social” to his or her site. “This service lets webmasters add social features to their sites by simply copying and pasting a few snippets of code — no advanced coding or technical background required.”
Friend Connect lets you log in using an existing account from Google, Yahoo, AOL, or OpenID. Google cites its main goal for Friend Connect is to facilitate an open social web with the help of open standards like OpenID and OAuth.
In the coming months, Google hopes to see more webmasters add Friend Connect to their sites, helping their visitors engage with each other across the web.
The two systems do different things so they're not in direct rivalry with each other.
Facebook Connect lets you link things to your social network on Facebook , while Google Friend Connect lets any web site add a social networking element.
Neither of these services seem that exciting, yet the coming months should prove which, if any, is more popular. µ
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