Facebook Nears 2 Billion Monthly Active Users (MAUs), Capitalizes Snapchat-like Features

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Facebook nears 2 billion monthly active users

Facebook has released its latest earnings result, with 1.94 billion monthly active users or MAUs and 76 million new users for Q1 2017.

With 17 percent more MAUs year-on-year, the social network is on track to reach the 2 billion MAU milestone within this year.

Facebook’s Unprecedented Growth

Yet again, this online giant has dwarfed its competitors–none of them reached half of Facebook’s active users in their latest quarterly results. Instagram had 700 million monthly active users, Twitter had 328 million MAUs and Pinterest had 175 million MAUs.

While each social network considers different factors in user count, Facebook has been consistent with its performance, especially with daily active users increasing by 18 percent year-on-year at 1.28 billion.

As the footnote says, the numbers for MAUs and DAUs exclude Facebook-owned platforms Instagram, WhatsApp, or Oculus unless qualified as such users based on other Facebook activities.

Facebook’s unprecedented growth shows that its users are in for the long haul. People who sign up continue to indulge in different activities within the platform.

Growth in The Asia-Pacific

On the chart, you will see how Facebook users in the Asia-Pacific continue to dominate usage of the social network. And rightfully so, as it is the most populated region, and where Internet adoption rate has reached new heights. And it continues to grow exponentially.

Facebook has ramped up efforts recently on areas with limited network connectivity using Facebook Lite and the recently introduced offline version of Instagram at F8.

With rising competition from Snapchat, Facebook is capitalizing its reach on developing markets, as the former focuses on developed markets only. Using Snapchat-inspired features on its own platform gives Facebook ample head start against its rivals in these markets.

What’s Up with WhatsApp

Facebook also revealed in its earnings call that 175 million DAUs are using its revamped WhatsApp Status–a feature similar to Snapchat Stories.

Although it has low market penetration in Western countries, WhatsApp continues to dominate other regions where Snapchat is unavailable. And, given the success of Instagram Stories and WhatsApp Status, Facebook looks poised to develop more similar features in developing markets.

Zuck on AR

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg admitted they were trailing against visual social networking platforms. But now he thinks their ahead with the recent launch of Camera Effects, which opens new opportunities to augmented reality developers.

He said AR will help the company offer new advertising options such as overlays on objects and scenes in the real world. Take note that Snapchat is also working on adding AR animations for a while now.

Revenue, Revenue and more Revenue

facebook nears 2 billion users

In the earnings result, Facebook beat estimates by posting $8.03 billion in revenue for Q1 2017. Still, it is lower by $777 million year-on-year.

The Asia-Pacific region continues to bring blessings for the company, whereas other regions’ numbers declined from the last quarter and revenue per user declined across the board.

Facebook has warned a slow revenue growth, as it reaches the ad content limit it can show in News Feed.

While overall revenue was down, mobile ad revenue grew by three percent year-on-year.

Weathering Storms

Facebook is still in good shape despite its challenges. The burgeoning active user growth is enough to appease investors and stakeholders of any potential concerns.

The social network has a more polished strategy in new products and rollouts. It managed to draw more users amid concerns of fake news and hesitation on new tools in Q1 2017.

Undoubtedly, Facebook has a deeply ingrained influence and role in our daily lives. And it will continue to grow and get bigger, as more people use different media to access the site and its features.

Read the full Facebook Q1 2017 Results.


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Author: Francis Rey

A network engineer by profession, Franz voraciously reads anything that piques his curiosity. He has authored a horde of articles on social media marketing. He spends downtime on road trips and binges with his significant other.

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