Despite the growing number of internet users worldwide, Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) has not been able to taste the success with any of its internet venture so far. Adding to the list is Microsoft’s very own social network Socl (pronounced Social), which is reportedly shutting down next week. The company has decided to pull down the curtains on Socl on March 15, 2017.
In a bid to take on Facebook and Twitter in social media space, Microsoft launched Socl in May 2012. The company made the beta version available for every internet users in December same year. Since then the company has been experimenting with it by introducing various features and designs, in anticipation of possible success. However, the company never had a clear vision with Socl, and that was a possible reason it failed to get internet users hooked with Socl.
Socl is the product out from Microsoft’s FUSE research arm. It was kicked off as a mysterious project which was eventually introduced to users for creating quick GIFs and quick shareable text-to-images.
Microsoft also introduced a Socl app for Windows, Android and iOS platform. However, the app failed miserably as internet users didn’t find much of unique value proposition in it.
It is yet not clear how many users have been actually making use of Socl till date and whether Microsoft will allow those users to download their data. Considering the negligible market size of Socl, it won’t be harsh to say that users may not even bother about that.
Microsoft has already announced the farewell of Socl via blog post. The Socl team thanked “a supportive community of like-minded people” and stated that they have learned invaluable lessons in what it takes to establish and maintain a community.
Microsoft is not the only technology giant which is struggling in social space; Google has also been trying for long to eat into the market of Facebook, albeit failed. Despite having access to billions of internet users’ data both Microsoft and Google couldn’t get the pulse of social media users. On the other hand, Facebook has, so far, impressively managed to keep users hooked to the network by introducing new features, like Live Videos, Nearby Friends, Jobs, etc..
Microsoft’s decision to kill Socl may not have any impact on social media industry, but it will surely boost the morale of Mark Zuckerberg & Team.