Mobile ads now dominate Facebook revenue

John C. Tanner

Mobile ads now dominate Facebook revenue

February 05, 2014
ITEM: Facebook is now officially a mobile business – at least statistically.
 
The social networking behemoth released its Q4 earnings Wednesday, with the numbers generally beating analyst expectation. The company’s ad revenue grew 76% year on year in Q4 2013, and – for the first time – mobile was responsible for the majority of it.
 
Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg said during the earnings call [PDF]:
 
Approximately 53% of our ad revenue came from mobile. This is not only the first time we crossed the 50% threshold, but it’s also our first billion-dollar mobile quarter. In fact, our Q4 mobile ad revenue of $1.25 billion was nearly as large as our total ad revenue in Q4 of last year.
 
As WaPo has noted, that figure is pretty remarkable when you remember that Facebook only started selling mobile ads in 2012.
 
  • 296 million mobile-only monthly active users (MAUs) (compared to 157 million YOY)
  • 945 million MAUs (compared to 680 million YOY)
  • 556 million mobile daily active users (compared to 374 million YOY)
Not bad for a for social network that’s supposedly dying off – that is, if you believe a number of studies in the last few months that claim teenagers are abandoning Facebook in droves, either because either they’re bored with it, or because their parents are on it.
 
That might be the case in the US and Europe, where those studies tend to be focused. But you wouldn’t know it from Facebook’s user numbers. While growth in monthly active users in the US/Canada and Europe is relatively modest compared to Asia and ROW (“rest of the world”), it’s still growth. If teenagers are ditching Facebook, other demographics are making up the difference.
 
Meanwhile, the majority of Facebook users aren’t in either of those regions – just over 60% of Facebook’s 1.2 billion MAUs come from Asia and ROW, where MAU growth has been much stronger.
 
So ... dying? No. Not anytime soon.
 
That said, as we move more to a mobile world and the Internet of Things and AI-powered apps and whatnot, Facebook will certainly have to evolve with the times to survive and stay relevant. However, Facebook has essentially been doing that since its inception ten years ago. Not everything has worked (see: Beacon, for starters). But Facebook has a history of learning (or at least recovering well) from its mistakes.
 
Anyway, Facebook unsurprisingly has big plans for mobile in 2014, to include developing more standalone mobile apps (following the same strategy with Messenger and Instagram) and, of course, operator partnerships, CEO/founder Mark Zuckerberg said during the earnings conference call:  
 
In 2014, we're going to focus on achieving Internet.org's mission by deepening our relationships with mobile operators around the world and working to develop new models for Internet access. Our existing partnerships with operators are something we've already invested a lot in over the years, and this is an area where we're really excited to build on going forward.
 
BONUS MATERIAL: If you didn’t know, Zuckerberg is headlining the keynotes at Mobile World Congress later this month.
Thumbail image from server side store: 
John C. Tanner


Tags
VMware's Casado talks about the goal of redefining a new architecture for network security
Market needs reliable infrastructure, pro-innovation policies, effective competition to mature
It's either that or handset subsidies, apparently
Vendors ignoring the basics of stability, good battery life, easy navigation
Even Android is being adapted for the new product segment
Low-cost devices and an encrypted smartphone OS steal the show
A rundown of the new smartphone OS challengers vying to be the third platform
Ericsson has been in Asia for more than 100 years and will continue to drive technology and services leadership in order to bring the best mobile experiences to end users

 

Telecomasia.net full website

© 2012 Questex Asia Ltd., a Questex Media Group company. All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or in part is prohibited. Please send any technical comments or questions to our webmaster.