Twitter’s IPO yesterday gave the company an eye-watering market cap of over $24 billion, all for a company that got us to share our thoughts in 140 character public messages. Twitter has private messages, sure, but the value to advertisers is in those public messages. But not all communications is meant for public, and LINE — the hugely popular Asian private messaging app — is reportedly eying a $10 billion IPO for its decidedly not-public messaging service.
It’s insanely easy to share your thoughts with the world these days thanks to Twitter and Facebook, but it seems like it’s increasingly hard to privately message everyone. You’ll have some friends you need to email, some to private message on Facebook, others to WhatsApp or Line message, not to mention old-fashioned email, SMS, Skype, and traditional IM. You might even need to thrown Snapchat and BBM into the mix, and perhaps a few more obscure messaging apps to cover everyone. It’s quite the mess.
There’s simple ways to cross-post to multiple social networks at once (hello, IFTTT, Buffer, and the awesome Draft for iOS among others). But when it comes to private messaging, everything’s separate, which is quite the pain unless all of your friends, family, and colleagues prefer the same app for communications.
So: if you could pick one way to private message, and had to get rid of the rest, which would you pick? I’d personally pick email, old though it is, since it’s far richer than the other messaging tools. But there’s something to say for short and simple newer services — so how about you?