WhatsApp, Facebook Futures Discussed By Mark Zuckerberg In New Interview

  • Michael Briggs , Design & Trend Staff Writer
  • Apr, 17, 2014, 03:32 PM
Mark Zuckerberg.
(Photo : REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst) Iranian officials have reportedly pushed for the ban of Facebook-owned WhatsApp in the country, possibly due to Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg's Jewish heritage.

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg recently sat down for a conversation with the New York Times, offering up some insight on Facebook's acquisition of WhatsApp and the "stages" that businesses like Paper, Messenger and Instagram progress through as they translate from prospect to business.

Check out an excerpt on the futures of WhatsApp and Facebook from the revealing interview below:


On the other hand, WhatsApp is huge - huger than Facebook's Messenger. And you bought that because you think it will move the needle someday. So, tell me about that acquisition, but also tell me: Why couldn't Facebook invent that? Do you worry that Facebook didn't invent that?


Well, so there are a bunch of things here. One thing is that Facebook Messenger is actually a really successful thing. More than 10 billion messages a day that flow through Facebook's messaging products. But I think we basically saw that the messaging space is bigger than we'd initially realized, and that the use cases that WhatsApp and Messenger have are more different than we had thought originally. Messenger is more about chatting with friends and WhatsApp is like an SMS replacement. Those things sound similar, but when you go into the nuances of how people use it, they are both very big in different markets.

I think you want to look at the things that we do in three stages. First, there's Facebook the app. A billion people or more are using it, and it is a business.

Next there's Instagram, WhatsApp, Messenger, Search - these are use cases that people use a lot, and they will probably be the next things that will become businesses at Facebook. But you want to fast-forward three years before that will actually be a meaningful thing.

Then there are things that are nascent, that we're inventing from scratch, like Home, Paper or any of the other Creative Labs work we're going to do. Maybe in three to five years those will be in the stage where Instagram and Messenger are now.

So what we want to do is build a pipeline of experiences for people to have. It would be a mistake to compare any of them in different life cycles to other ones. They're in different levels.


Instagram and WhatsApp are not going to be branded as Facebook apps. So eventually part of your business will be apps that people don't think of as Facebook. Is that the way to think about the future of Facebook. Is it like a conglomerate?


One of the things that we're trying to do with Creative Labs and all our experiences is explore things that aren't all tied to Facebook identity. Some things will be, but not everything will have to be, because there are some sets of experiences that are just better with other identities. I think you should expect to see more of that, where apps are going to be tied to different audiences that you can share with."

WhatsApp features 450 million monthly active users, with 70 percent considered "active on a daily basis," Facebook said in a press release at the time of its acquisition.

The company declared in early April via Twitter that it has set a new record with 64 billion messages processed in a 24-hour span. The record comprised of 20 billion inbound messages and 44 billion outbound messages, according to the messaging app.

The announcement is further proof that WhatsApp is not only thriving with its current base, but also expanding.

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