The service is an overt attempt to stare down the likes of Google, Yahoo and Microsoft in the communication realm, and-some might argue-and attempt to validate the usefulness of the site as more companies adopt a social media strategy.
No matter how you look at it-either as a great addition to Facebook's functionality or as a lame attempt at building a better mousetrap-Titan is one example of a larger trend in collaboration. Indeed, the merging of myriad communication tools into one central platform is the standard blueprint for any company delving into collaboration, from Google with its Gmail and related properties to enterprise companies such as Avaya with its slate of unified communications offerings.
The problem is, if everyone is doing it, are we doomed to have 15 different e-mail addresses? I sometimes have a difficult enough time handling the three I most often use-adding specific addresses for specific collaboration platforms just may put me over the edge.
In terms of where the collaboration market is heading, Facebook's moves are mere baby steps. I predict future iterations will include group collaboration (a la Microsoft SharePoint), VoIP click-to-call functionality and even videoconferencing. I also predict Facebook won't be first to this party-that honor will remain squarely with Google, in my humble opinion.
I applaud Facebook for recognizing the future path of communication, and for its attempt at legitimizing the social media space with enterprise-like collaboration functionality. Too bad it wasn't accomplished by a social media company that is actually more suited to the enterprise.