Facebook’s Messenger application may be adding video chat features, according to a rumor on Italian technology blog iPhoneItalia.
The blog’s source is reporting that Facebook has released a beta test of the new video feature to developers only. The rumor has some credibility since the same source previously said Facebook was planning to let users of its Messenger app chat with friends outside of the social network — a feature which has since been released.
The source grabbed rough screenshots showing the beginnings of a video chat feature, which can be seen to the right. The screenshots look too doctored to put much stock in them, but we can’t immediately rule out the possibility of a Facebook mobile video chat. In fact, it makes sense.
The social-media company’s desktop client already allows for video chatting, and many other companies are still interested in mobile video chat, including Skype, Tango and Google. Google’s social network Google+ has its own popular video chat function, Hangouts. Hangouts allows you to video chat with multiple people at one time for free through the social network. Since launching its Android app, Google+ has supported mobile video chat, but is still unavailable on iOS devices.
If this feature is legitimate, it will be a win for Facebook over Google+’s Hangouts. The source said the chat function will be released on the iPhone 4 and 4S, with no word on other device compatibility.