Popular mobile messaging service WhatsApp has crossed 600 million monthly active users, CEO Jan Koum announced. The company had crossed 500 million monthly active users in April, which means it has added 100 million users in just four months.
Now serving 600,000,000 monthly active users. Yes, active and registered are very different types of numbers…
— jan koum (@jankoum) August 25, 2014
WhatsApp is clearly leading the pack followed by Tencent’s WeChat with 438 million active users, and Viber with 100 million active users. Koum also takes a dig at other messaging services who do not reveal the number of monthly active users, saying, “Yes, active and registered are very different types of numbers.”
Last week, WhatsApp also announced that it had more than 60 million monthly active users in India.
Going forward, WhatsApp is also looking at voice calling service, but the project seems to have run into delays. The company is still working on the project, but there is no timeframe for a launch.
Here’s a brief timeline of WhatsApp’s growth:
June 2009 – WhatsApp is incepted by two of former Yahoo employees, Brian Acton and Jan Koum, to provide an alternative of SMS services to users. The messenger app allows users to send unlimited messages over Internet connection without needing the regular top up credits. Most importantly, the service is launched at a nominal one-time payment of $0.99.
April 2011 – WhatsApp grows as a popular data-based messaging service and receives $8 million in funding from investors, which helps the company grow further.
October 2011 – WhatsApp continues to grow stronger, and the number of messages sent through the app touch a billion messages per day mark. Despite popular services like iMessage on Apple devices and BlackBerry Messenger, WhatsApp continues to grow.
August 2012 – It was not even a year since WhatsApp had achieved the one billion messages per day mark, and WhatsApp records 10 billion messages being sent per day, ringing danger bells for other companies.
December 2012 – Rumors emerge about Facebook being in talks with the messaging platform for a possible acquisition.
January 2013 – WhatsApp announces it processed 18 billion messages on New Year’s Eve, which reflects its popularity among its users. The number also shows that the platform has become a perfect substitute for SMS.
April 2013 – Once again rumors of WhatsApp’s acquisition related talks emerge, however this time it is Google that is rumored to have made a $1 billion offer for buying out the service.
June 2013 – Even with the arrival of new apps in the market to give competition to WhatsApp, the service continues to grow. It breaks its own record and processes a whopping 27 billion messages per day.
June 2013 – For the first time, WhatsApp reveals it has crossed 250 million monthly active users, which makes it bigger than Twitter.
December and January 2013 – WhatsApp user base grows by another 50 million to reach 400 million monthly active users. Creates a new record by processing 54 billion messages sent over a day on New Year’s Eve.
February 2014: Social networking giant Facebook finally acquires WhatsApp over a year after reports about the possible acquisition talks surfaced on the web. The deal is worth a staggering $19 billion, which involves $4 billion in cash, about $12 billion in Facebook stock, and $3 billion in restricted shares.
April 2014: WhatsApp crosses 500 million user mark earlier this year. The company also announced that users were sending 700 million photos and 100 million videos over WhatsApp every single day.
August 2014: The user base in India crosses 60 million monthly active users, adding 10 million users in just three months.