Facebook is now admitting that it is indeed planning to unify communications within its three messaging apps (WhatsApp, Instagram and Messenger) and it says the new plan will ensure better encryption and security on the platforms. The plan was made official by Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg in a call with investors on Wednesday.
The consolidated Facebook Messenger, WhatsApp and Instagram platform won’t occur for quite a while, however. “It’s still early days,” said Zuckerberg.
On the need to do this, the Facebook CEO said this would make it easier for users in the Facebook ecosystem to identify with and use other services so an example according to him is the Marketplace feature which allows users to click on items within the Messenger app. The feature which many see as taking on eBay is currently limited to Messenger but Mark Zuckerberg thinks that the next time WhatsApp users get such a link sent to them from Messenger, they won’t have to leave the app but stay within and carry out their transactions.
He added that it made sense to go this way as the three apps now have about 2.7b unique users (4 billion in total) users between them while Facebook.com has 1.5 billion daily active users.
Facebook has faced a lot privacy questions from users and government officials alike who think the social media giant has paid little attention to privacy over the years at the expense of profit making. In spite of the turbulent past year, Facebook reported $16.9 billion in revenue for the fourth quarter, up 30 percent from the year ago quarter, and $55.8 billion in revenue for 2018, up 37 percent from 2017’s $40.6 billion.
The company stock though had a brief but massive drop in price last December after it was revealed that it was sharing user data with third party and fellow tech firms like Microsoft. The drop swiped $16b off Mark Zuckerberg’s net worth in December.
This was unlike the rise in stock value back in April of 2018 when Mark Zuckerberg testified before US Senators on a range of privacy matters.