By Vamien McKalin | Apr 17, 2013 09:46 AM EDT
The unthinkable has happened: WhatsApp has become bigger than Twitter, according to CEO Jan Koum at the Dive Into Mobile Conference. Certainly, the figures Koum dished out are impressive and quite unexpected.
The figures show that WhatsApp has over 200 million users; 12 billion outbound messages per day, so in terms of active users, WhatsApp is bigger than Twitter. Just last year in August, WhatsApp announced it has surpassed six billion outbound messages, which means the messaging app accumulated the extra six billion in just seven months. This makes WhatsApp one of the most valuable app companies in the world, which could mean some big company could be gearing up to drop a billion dollars to acquire the company sooner rather than later.
Currently, WhatsApp makes money by charging a yearly subscription of $0.99 per user. This seems to be working out quite well for the app company, along with deals it made with carriers and phone makers around the world.
"We're looking forward to a world with billions of phones," Koum said in an interview with AllThingsD. "And once that happens it's going to be extremely easy to monetize. But a lot more people need to join the smartphone revolution and a lot more people need to buy more goods on their phones."
If you are thinking one day WhatsApp will be overrun with advertisements everywhere you look, think again.
"We do have a manifesto opposing advertising," Koum said. "We're proud of that. Who likes advertising? We're so bombarded with ads so much in our daily lives and we felt that smartphones aren't the place for that. Our phones are so intimately connected to us, to our lives. Putting advertising on a device like that is a bad idea. You don't want to be interrupted by ads when you're chatting with your loved ones."
It's good to see WhatsApp not falling into the world of advertising with the application. Ads can be very distracting at times, especially when you accidentally tap on an ad that is placed in the wrong place.
© 2013 Mobile & Apps All rights reserved. Do not reproduce without permission.