WhatsApp hit a major milestone yesterday with the company reporting a user base of over one billion. Just over a year ago, WhatsApp celebrated it’s half-billion milestone so it seems the app has defied being the centre of an encryption debate, to see its user numbers soar regardless.
Not only has the company hit a target that means 1/7th of the world’s entire population is using it, but it also recently announced it was going completely free, ditching its micro-subscription annual charge in the process.
In a recent blog post, WhatsApp revealed that it intends to keep focus on the core value of the business.
“WhatsApp began as a simple idea: ensuring that anyone could stay in touch with family and friends anywhere on the planet, without costs or gimmicks standing in the way.”
Only 6 billion more to go
The challenge now is to find a way to keep increasing the service capacity, speed and security and get the rest of the world, another 6 billion users, to install it.
It remains to be seen if removing the fee will be enough to sustain the company with WhatsApp planning to connect brands and users directly within chats. Let’s hope that feature is easy to turn off.