Facebook announced today that over 500 million people now use its standalone messaging app Messenger every month. The announcement comes a few months after company s decision to force users to install the Messenger app. Also Read - Happy Friendship Day 2021: How to send Friendship Day wishes Stickers on WhatsAppAlso Read - Facebook is finally bringing 'smart glasses' in collaboration with Ray-Ban
Launched in 2011, Messenger now has over 500 million monthly active users. Until a few months ago, the messaging client was also available on the desktop platform, but it was later discontinued, suggesting the company s focus towards the growing mobile users. Also Read - Google, Facebook make vaccination mandatory for employees returning to office
Till recently, Facebook gave users an option to either use the Messenger app or access the messaging service from within the Facebook app. However, the company soon announced that users will have to use the Messenger client on their phones and tablets if they want to chat with their friends. The move was criticized by many, but it has evidently helped the service gain lots of users.
At his first public Q&A session, Zuckerberg offered an explanation on why the company wants users to use the Messenger client. Messaging is one of the few things that users do more than social networking. We thought that even though it was a short-term painful thing to ask people to install another app, but offers better experience as a dedicated app, he said.
Zuckerberg’s admission that messaging is one of the things that people do more than social networking points out that Facebook was not only late in entering the messaging app scene but now is going to be one of the major focus areas for the social networking giant. Even though Facebook acquired WhatsApp for over $19 billion earlier this year, we expect Messenger to be the marquee Facebook messaging service, which will also have monetization opportunities. Earlier this year, Facebook let people upload their phonebook to Messenger, to allow them to send messages to their contacts even when they are not connected on Facebook. It also added the ability to make voice calls via Messenger.
As per a graph provided by analytics firm Statista, Messenger has gained over 300 million users in the recent months. With 500 million monthly active users, Facebook s Messenger has surpassed other popular instant messaging clients including WeChat, Skype, and Viber. The only other service that has more monthly active users than Messenger is WhatsApp, which had over 600 million monthly active users in August this year.
Making people use the Messenger app also suggests that the company could someday start monetizing from the service. Bolstering to that theory is Facebook s hire of David Marcus who has previously led eBay and PayPal. There is still a lot for us to do and we’re looking forward to bringing more innovation and updates to you in the coming months. he said in a Facebook post.
The company has over 1.12 billion people using the service from mobile out of which 456 million accessed Facebook only from their mobile phones at the end of September. Mobile advertising now accounted for 66 percent of Facebook’s advertising revenues during the last quarter. A report from last month claimed that Facebook is working on bringing mobile payment options to the Messenger client which would allow users to send money to their friends using the app.