Facebook has announced that the number of WhatsApp users worldwide has reached 2 billion. At the same time the social media giant, which acquired WhatsApp for $21 billion, also emphasised on the fact that WhatsApp is the most secured mobile messaging platform for private conversations which are secured end-to-end by default.
WhatsApp which was first launched in May 2009, started attracting the eyeballs of the mobile users once the adoption of the smartphone exploded since the beginning of 2014.
While it took the WhatsApp team nearly 5 years to reach 200 million users in April 2013, in the following 8 months, the number of WhatsApp users doubled, reaching 400 million by the end of 2013.
The growth in the number of WhatsApp’s user base exploded after the acquisition by Facebook in 2014. By April 2014, WhatsApp crossed half a billion mark in terms of the number of users. The next 500 million users joined WhatsApp in less than 2 years.
In February 2016 WhatsApp celebrated the achievement of 1 billion users milestone.
It’s interesting to learn that WhatsApp took nearly 7 years to add first 1 billion users, the next 1 billion users came in less than 4 years. With 2 billion WhatsApp users worldwide, it is the most popular mobile messaging app worldwide. It’s closest competitor WeChat, the most popular mobile messaging app in China, has 1.15 billion users only.
WhatsApp Founding Team Parted Ways
Despite all the impressive growth figures, WhatsApp founding team left Facebook, leaving $1.3 billion on the table. In 2018, differences between Mark Zuckerberg and Brian Acton, Jan Koum over WhatsApp monetisation through ads and revenue resulted in an ugly spilt. The situation was reportedly so bad that both the founders of WhatsApp left Zuckerberg’s team without bothering about stocks, worth $1.3 billion, which was awarded as a part of the acquisition deal.
In early 2020, however, Facebook reportedly dropped its plan to show ads on WhatsApp. Hence, it would be interesting to see whats revenue model Facebook may introduce in the future!