While it is a bit of a slow news week, the addition of chat functionality to facebook seems to be getting a lot of interest. Is this really a functionality that is particularly life changing? There is some good use for this if most of your friends are on FB and this has become your main tool of connection, but I have found that unless you live in San Fransisco that is unlikely to be the case. For most people they already have the friends they want to IM with added into their existing IM client. On top of this a lot of their friends are not on Facebook or use it infrequently.
So for those occasions where you just happen to be on FB at the same time as someone you want to communicate with, and you don’t already know they are online from your IM client then ther may bo some limited benefit to this technology. Of course the goal of this is to increase the functionality of Facebook in such a way that it could eventually encroach on that part of your Internet experience. Why do you need a seperate IM client if all of you friends are on Facebook?
I still do not think there is a compelling feature of FB that will keep its market there and attract the laggards in. It is still to easy to go elsewhere.