Once again it seems that the people at Facebook were right.
The purchase of the messaging service WhatsApp for $19 billion two years ago was questioned by many but the service now has over 1 billion users.
This means that WhatsApp it is now the second most popular messaging service after, yes you have guessed it, Facebook Messenger – this is of course if don’t include the apps that Google and Co bundle onto Android phones.
WhatsApp popularity now means that one in seven people use the service to keep in touch with family and friends. What may be surprising is the fact that although developed by two ex Yahoo engineers in Silicon Valley it is still relatively unpopular in the US. Across the developing World in countries within
Africa and India in particular it has proved extremely popular. This when coupled with the existing popularity of the app in countries in Europe and South America suggests that WhatsApp is going from strength to strength.
The app has certainly experienced its fair share of problems along the way and has often struggled to make it more commercially viable. The $1 a year subscription fee was recently and many people would say wisely dropped earlier this year but since the acquisition by Facebook new streams have become available.
The long term idea is for businesses to communicate with consumers using the app so for example you could book a holiday or make a restaurant reservation using the App. Facebook are also looking into this using Messenger and it is indeed something that is already being used by WeChat in China.