Micro-blogging is a term described by Wikipedia as "a form of blogging that allows users to write brief text updates (usually less than 200 characters) and publish them, either to be viewed by anyone or by a restricted group which can be chosen by the user". Several startups have witnessed phenomenal growth with micro-blogging services, most notably Twitter. In addition, numerous social networks - including Facebook and Bebo - have integrated similar status update services. The space is hot and it's still heating up. So let's take a look at 10 of the key players.

Twitter

Twitter is the key player in space and the company name is used synonymously with micro-blogging. The free service allows users to post status updates via SMS, e-mail, or web browser. What's more, Twitter has an open platform allowing third party developers to build on top of it.

Pownce

Pownce recently launched a micro-blogging platform with added functionality. On top of messaging, users can quickly and easily share links, files, or events with any or all of his/her contacts. See our in-depth review of Pownce for more details.

Tumblr

Tumblr is a very clean, slick micro-blogging platform. Its focus is on simplicity and elegance. Similar to Pownce, users can share a variety of things, including text, photos, quotes, links, chats, or even videos.

Jaiku

Jaiku is considered by many to be Twitter's closest competitor. Most features and functions are similar. It will be interesting to see how the company plans to emerge from the shadow of its main rival.

MySay

MySay is what it says. Instead of text updates, users call MySay and say how they are doing today. Then, friends or family can listen via phone, e-mail, or the web.

Hictu

Hictu is a service for video microbloggers. A webcam and a mouse-click are all that is needed to create a videopost. This streamlined solution saves time and effort for traditional vloggers.

Moodmill

Moodmill is a way to express your mood or current state of being. A sliding scale facilitates this process, while a quick text update completes the personalized service.


Frazr

Frazr is also very similar to Twitter. The main difference is one of language. Frazr is focused primarily on the French and German markets.

IRateMyDay

IRateMyDay allows you the ability to (yes, you guessed it) rate your day on a scale of 'Worst' to 'Great'. Users can also provide a short text update to accompany the rating.

Emotionr

Emotionr is a way to gauge your happiness on a scale of 1-10 (decimals included). As the name touts, it is a way to express and share your emotions and feelings with those around you.

Conclusion

Micro-blogging isn't a short-term trend - it is here to stay. The evolution of blogging has spawned this new mini version of blogging and many are latching on. The simplicity and ability to post frequently are what attract most to the concept. We expect much faster adoption and mainstream penetration than blogging in general.