Facebook To Buy Messaging App Whatsapp For $19bn
Facebook has bought messaging app WhatsApp in a deal worth a total of $19bn in cash and shares.
It is the social networking giant’s biggest acquisition to date.
WhatsApp has more than 450 million monthly users and is popular with people looking to avoid text messaging charges.
In a statement announcing the deal, Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg described WhatsApp’s services as “incredibly valuable”.
WhatsApp allows users to send messages over internet connections, avoiding text messaging fees. The company claims it is currently registering one million new users a day.
It makes money by charging users a subscription fee of $1 per year, although it offers a free model as well.
Facebook Launches Whatsapp Digital Payment Service
WhatsApp has launched its digital payments service in Brazil as the messaging app capitalises on its popularity in emerging markets.
The move comes as parent company Facebook pushes ahead with plans to bring more e-commerce to its platforms.
WhatsApp Pay allows users to send money to one another for free or make purchases from small businesses.
In January, chief executive Mark Zuckerberg outlined plans to offer the service in India, Indonesia and Mexico.
On its blog WhatsApp highlighted that the launch was part of a wider digital payment strategy across all of Facebook’s platforms.
“Because payments on WhatsApp are enabled by Facebook Pay, in the future we want to make it possible for people and businesses to use the same card information across Facebookâs family of apps.”
While person-to-person payments will be free small businesses will have to pay a âprocessing fee to receive customer payments,â the blog stated.
WhatsApp has 120m users in Brazil, making the country its second-largest market after India.
The company has already been trialling the payment service in India, where it has 400m users.
However, the firm’s efforts to launch WhatsApp Pay in India have been held up for two years by regulators.
In April, Facebook announced that it had bought a 10% stake in Indian telecoms group Reliance Jio for $5.7bn .
That deal gives Facebook a powerful ally in Reliance Jio’s chairman Mukesh Ambani, who is Asia’s richest man.
Is It Really About The Money Though
Industry insiders have speculated that part of the rationale behind acquiring WhatsApp was for Meta to access users behavioral data and personal information.
With location sharing data, 65 billion messages sent per day, and access to users’ entire contact lists, Meta has access to a ton of personal informationall uploaded and saved on its servers. While has previously promised that this data wont be used to improve consumer targeting in Meta ads, it will be unless the user changes the settings to not share information with Meta.
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Whatsapp Revenue And Usage Statistics
WhatsApp is a messaging app for smartphones created in 2009 by two former Yahoo employees, Brian Acton and Jan Koum.
It was Koum who saw the potential of operating through the Apple App Store after purchasing an iPhone in early 2009. The app initially focused on statuses Koum later revealed that part of his motivation was to stop missing calls will he was the gym.
The app, developed by Igor Solomennikov, who the team found through RentACoder.com, leveraged Apples new push notification feature to update users networks with status updates. Users quickly came to use this as an instant messaging service, planting the seed for what the app would become. WhatsApp 2.0 incorporated the messaging function that would come to be the apps defining feature.
WhatsApp was unique at the time, outside of Blackberrys BBM, in providing a free message service that allowed users to log in with their phone number. WhatsApp 2.0 was an instant success, quickly reaching 250,000 active users. This was enough for Acton to convince a circle of fellow ex-Yahoo employees to part with $250,000 in seed funding.
Naturally, this growth has attracted money even with practically non-existent WhatsApp revenue. Venture capital titans Sequoia Capital invested $8 million in April 2011 after eight months of negotiations, and a further $52 million in February 2013. This gave us a WhatsApp valuation of $1.5 billion.
We have collected data and statistics on WhatsApp. Read on below to find out more.
One Dollar At A Time And Beyond
The short answer used to be $1 at a time. In some countries, the app used to cost about $1 to download in others, the first year is free, but each subsequent year costs $1 in other words, WhatsApp had a subscription model. At the peak under this model, it had about 700 million users worldwide yearly revenue can be estimated at $700 million per year at that time.
In January 2016, Facebook revealed in a 10-Q filing that because WhatsApp was monetized in “a very limited fashion,” it may not be generating meaningful revenue in the long term, hinting that the strategy would change. Shortly after, WhatsApp announced in a blog post that the era of subscriptions had come to an end and the messaging app would now be free to use.
There are still no ads in the app, however. “Starting this year, we will test tools that allow you to use WhatsApp to communicate with businesses and organizations that you want to hear from,” the company wrote at the time. The goal is to have people communicate directly with their banks, airlines, etc. over the app, while the businesses pick up the bill previously paid through subscriptions.
WhatsApp Business, the business platform of the messaging app, provides a host of tools for businesses to access company insights and measure metrics, making it an attractive tool for businesses.
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Facebook Owns The Four Most Downloaded Apps Of The Decade
The four most downloaded apps of the decade are all owned by Facebook, according to app tracker App Annie.
Facebook, Facebook Messenger, WhatsApp and Instagram top App Annie’s list, which was published on Monday.
The most downloaded app between 2010 and 2019 was Facebook’s main app, followed by the company’s Facebook Messenger app.
WhatsApp came third, and Instagram fourth.
Facebook in 2012 for $1bn , and WhatsApp in 2014 for $19bn.
The App Annie ranking highlights just how much power and control Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg has.
The four main apps that Zuckerberg oversees boast more than a billion users each.
“It is not ok,” said Taha Yasseri, a senior research fellow in computation science at the Oxford Internet Institute.
“One company owning four of the most popular social networking and communication apps, at best, can be described as a data monopoly.”
Mr Yasseri added: “Combined, the data from multiple platforms can lead to an extremely high level of precision in modelling our traits and behaviours. This amount of power should be regulated.”
The UK “should tackle dominance of online giants,” the UK’s competition regulator said on Wednesday.
The Competition and Markets Authority raised concerns that people using these platforms may not be in control of their data.
Snapchat and Skype came 5th and 6th, followed by TikTok and UC Browser, which is owned by China’s Alibaba.
YouTube came 9th and Twitter was in 10th place.
Silicon Valley’s Newest Billionaires
The deal to buy it includes $4bn in cash and approximately $12bn-worth of Facebook shares, plus an additional $3bn in stock to WhatsApp’s founders and employees at a later date.
On a conference call to discuss the deal, WhatsApp co-founder Jan Koum said he planned to operate the firm “independently and autonomously”. He will also become a member of Facebook’s board of directors.
“We’re excited and honoured to partner with Mark and Facebook as we continue to bring our product to more people around the world,” Mr Koum said in a statement.
Mr Zuckerberg said the prospect of a deal was first floated just 11 days ago.
The Facebook founder said he believed WhatsApp was on track to have a billion users, but insisted he had no plans to place advertising on WhatsApp’s interface, saying he did not think ads were the best way to make money from messaging systems.
Once the deal is finalised, Mr Koum and co-founder Brian Acton are set to become Silicon Valley’s newest billionaires.
WhatsApp has about 50 employees in total.
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Changes Will Go Into Effect Immediately
According to the story by Engadget, the notice then went on saying that the 40-hour or one week paid leave for those that get COVID-19 will go into effect immediately and will apply to all employees that are in the United States regardless of their own vaccination status.
The shift actually mirrors the CDC’s fully updated isolated guidance, which was pushed on December 27 along with Walmart’s decision to reduce its paid pandemic sick leave policies as well. To add, it currently stands to reason that other companies will most likely follow Amazon and Walmart’s suit.
Amazon Reinstates Mask Policy For On
Amazon has just recently reinstated the company’s mask policy for on-site workers. The requirement, plus mandatory temperature checks, were put in place during the same time as the original two-week leave policy in 2021 and was also subsequently rolled back for workers that were fully vaccinated back in May.
Although Amazon has most of the time been criticized for the treatment of its staff, in this particular case, it is actually following the federal guidance while looking out for its very own financial interests above other priorities.
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Covid Tests At $14 Nearly Double
Earlier during the week, the White House deal with retailers that mandated at-home COVID-tests be sold for an affordable $14 has finally expired. This then led to those exact same tests nearly doubling in price at Kroger and Walmart, as per an article by the Wall Street Journal.
Some policies, including pandemic unemployment benefits, have also ended while other safeguards like New York’s eviction moratorium, for example, are slated to expire soon as per Gothamist. To add, the US is still experiencing a “record-setting” amount of positive COVID-19 cases as per NBC News.
What Happened To Hazard Pay
Amazon is actually correct that the CDC altered what it now believes to be the necessary length of isolation when it comes to positive-testing individuals. To add, this still eludes the fact that both Amazon and Walmart, not long ago, still offered hazard pay to their workers for facing the same risks that also exist today.
According to the Wall Street Journal, the policies were also rolled back quickly as well.
This article is owned by Tech Times
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Microsoft Windows And Mac
On May 10, 2016, the messaging service was introduced for both Microsoft Windows and macOS operating systems. Recently, WhatsApp added support for video calls and voice calls from their desktop clients. Similar to the WhatsApp Web format, the app, which will be synced with a user’s mobile device, is available for download on the website. It supports OS versions of Windows 8 and OS X 10.10 and higher.
List Of Mergers And Acquisitions By Meta Platforms
Meta Platforms is a technology company that has acquired 91 other companies, including WhatsApp. The WhatsApp acquisition closed at a steep $16 billion more than $40 per user of the platform. Meta also purchased the defunct company ConnectU in a court settlement and acquired intellectual property formerly held by rival Friendster. The majority of the companies acquired by Meta are based in the United States, and in turn, a large percentage of these companies are based in or around the San Francisco Bay Area. Meta has also made investments in LuckyCal and Wildfire Interactive.
Most of Meta’s acquisitions have primarily been “talent acquisitions” and acquired products are often shut-down. In 2009, Meta CEO posted a question on Quora, titled “What startups would be good acquisitions for Facebook?”, receiving 79 answers. He stated in 2010 that “We have not once bought a company for the company. We buy companies to get excellent people… In order to have a really entrepreneurial culture one of the key things is to make sure we’re recruiting the best people. One of the ways to do this is to focus on acquiring great companies with great founders.” The acquisition, announced on April 9, 2012, appears to have been the first exception to this pattern. While continuing with a pattern of primarily talent acquisitions, other notable product focused acquisitions include the $19 billion WhatsApp acquisition and the $2 billion Oculus VR acquisition.
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