Chatroulette – the Internet hype of 2010?

Will Chatroulette become the Internet hype of 2010?

It’s quite likely, if we look at its popularity. Every major news agency, which include the NY Times, CNN & TIME, has written about it by now.

What is Chatroulette? A plain site which pairs random strangers for webcam-based conversations. Visitors to the website randomly begin an online stranger chat (audio, video and/or text) with another visitor. At any point, either user may leave the current chat and initiate another random connection.

The website uses Adobe Flash Player to display video and access the user’s webcam. The new Rtmfp peer-to-peer network protocol inside Flash Player 10 allows almost all video and audio streams to travel directly between user computers, without using server bandwidth.

Kudos to Andrey Ternovskiy for coming up with this intriguing concept. Chatroulette seems to have 30,000+ users at any given time of the day, and over 500,000 visits a day.

It is currently already one of the 1000 most visited sites on this planet, according to Alexa.
Will it become more popular than Facebook? I don’t think so…
But it is definitely a site to check out. Just ignore the (literal!) wankers, if that’s not your thing… 😉

update (March 17th): It appears abuse-checking is finally in place at ChatRoulette. If you don’t behave, you get a popup:
Oops.. Someone reported you. Sorry, but you can't use the service for the next 10 minutes
Let’s hope this cuts down on the percentage of wankers… 😎

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