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WhatsApp Statistics: Revenue, Usage, and History

WhatsApp Statistics Revenue, Usage, and History - Featured Illustration

Text messages, voice calls, recorded voice messages, video calls – how do you want to communicate? WhatsApp gives you all the tools you need to stay in touch. And with more active users than any other messaging tool, it surpasses even Facebook’s own marquee app when it comes to popularity. 

WhatsApp was the first app of its kind on the market, and one of the biggest reasons people favor it is the simple, beautiful interface coupled with the fact that this program is completely ad-free.

So how does WhatsApp earn its money, and why exactly is it so successful?

Our WhatsApp statistics can answer those questions and more. 

WhatsApp Stats – Highlights

  • As of 2017, WhatsApp had 1.5 billion active users in 180 countries.
  • 500 million people use WhatsApp Status daily.
  • More than 65 million text messages are sent through WhatsApp each day.
  • India has the largest number of WhatsApp users — 400 million.
  • Only 2 million people from China use WhatsApp.

What’s the Big Deal About WhatsApp?

1. WhatsApp was founded in 2009 by two former Yahoo employees, Brian Acton and Jan Koum.

(Wikipedia)

We’ve got lots of WhatsApp statistics for the web, but before we get into the numbers, here’s a little history.

After leaving their Yahoo positions in 2007, Acton and Koum applied for jobs at Facebook, but were rejected. They wandered around the job market, trying to figure out what they wanted to do. Their inspiration came once they purchased their first iPhones. They quickly grasped the potential of Apple’s app store, and they developed an idea — they wanted to make a messaging app that would show people’s status next to their names. WhatsApp was launched in 2009 and a new era of instant messaging began. 

2. By 2017, WhatsApp had 1.5 billion active users in 180 countries.

(Statista)

The latest available WhatsApp, Instagram, and Facebook statistics show that WhatsApp has attracted more users than these other internet giants. With just over 1.5 billion users in 2017, WhatsApp edges out Facebook (1.3 billion) and Instagram (800 million). 

3. There are 1 billion active daily WhatsApp users.

(TechCrunch)

WhatsApp is definitely not one of those apps you install and forget. With over a billion users logging in each day, it has become an irreplaceable tool for communication. 

4. The US WhatsApp market has 68.1 million users.

(Statista)

WhatsApp user numbers are steadily growing in the US. They are predicted to reach 85.8 million by 2023 as more people rely on WhatsApp to keep in touch with their friends and family.

5. 500 million people use WhatsApp Status daily.

(Statista)

If you use Snapchat Stories or Instagram Stories, WhatsApp Status will make you feel right at home. This feature allows you to post a status update that disappears 24 hours after you upload it. WhatsApp user statistics show that this is one of the most popular ways people tell their loved ones what they’re up to. 

6. WhatsApp Business was launched in January 2018.

(TechCrunch)

Aimed at small businesses, WhatsApp Business was an immediate hit. It helped companies connect with customers more easily in order to build brand loyalty. Three million firms are already using it. One of the best parts is WhatsApp Business Statistics, a handy little feature that allows you to see statistics on how the messages you send to your consumers are sent, delivered, read, and received. You can track user engagement and experience, then modify your business strategy accordingly. This is a great way to build a bond with people who shop from you and make them feel like they are a part of your team. 

7. 65 billion messages are sent through WhatsApp every day.

(CNET)

People are really chatty on WhatsApp! And how could they not be, when it gives them an easy way to reach whoever they want, whenever they want. Long-distance relationships, relatives who live two states away, and friends you just don’t have the time to see become instantly available. Programs like these are the very pinnacle of human technology because they let us stay close to those who matter the most.

WhatsApp Revenue and Finance Statistics

8. Facebook bought WhatsApp for $19 billion in 2014.

(Wikipedia)

Instagram, Chainspace, Oculus VR, Onechat…the list of Facebook acquisitions just keeps growing. WhatsApp statistics improved after Facebook acquired it, but one of the co-founders, Brian Acton, has regretted his decision to sell the company. “I sold my users’ privacy to a larger benefit,” Acton said to Forbes. “I made a choice and a compromise. And I live with that every day.”

9. WhatsApp used to charge a $1 yearly subscription fee.

(Investopedia)

In some countries, WhatsApp used to charge $1 a year, one year after joining. In others, it used to cost $1 just to download the app. At its peak, the subscription model had 700 million users worldwide, as most people didn’t mind paying a single dollar to get a great app they could use to their heart’s content. However, WhatsApp personal statistics show that usage really kicked off once the subscription model was dropped in 2016. 

Since WhatsApp was monetized in a very limited manner, the owners decided that it wasn’t generating any kind of meaningful long-term revenue. They dropped subscriptions and the app became free to use, so the public came rushing in and a new influx of subscribers flooded the market. This increased market penetration — once a member of a social group downloads the app and starts using it, they inevitably encourage everyone else from the group to use it. 

10. WhatsApp was generating about $12 per user by mid-2017.

(Digital Information World)

According to WhatsApp statistics, a single user made around $12 for WhatsApp in mid-2017. With 1.3 billion users and $15 billion in revenue, this showed an upward path for the company and made it obvious that it could become incredibly profitable.

11. In 2009, WhatsApp got $250,000 as its first investment.

(Feedough)

Brian Acton managed to persuade five friends and ex-Yahoo employees that WhatsApp is a worthy cause. WhatsApp statistics show that this gave it just enough to keep the project going, even though it wasn’t generating much revenue at that point. All five investors got the status of co-founders of the company. 

12. In 2011, Sequoia Capital invested $8 million in WhatsApp.

(TechCrunch)

Before WhatsApp ever became popular, Sequoia Capital saw its potential. In 2011 the firm invested a hefty sum of cash to help jumpstart it, and they got a 15% share of the company.

13. In 2014, Sequoia Capital invested $50 million more in WhatsApp.

(New York Times)

WhatsApp revenue and usage statistics show that Sequoia Capital’s investment paid off — so much that they decided to invest again in 2014. While the information about the ROI of this move isn’t publicly available, in 2014 the New York Times predicted that they could earn 50 times the money they invested. 

WhatsApp Usage Statistics

14. More than 2 billion minutes of voice and video calls are made on WhatsApp daily.

(CNET)

The only company that can rival WhatsApp in this regard is Skype, whose users spend 3 billion minutes on voice and video calls daily. That’s a big difference, but WhatsApp’s figures are climbing steadily. There are about 100 million voice calls and 55 million video calls made on WhatsApp each day.

15. There are more than 65 million text messages sent through WhatsApp each day.

(Text Request)

Chat statistics for WhatsApp indicate that users exchange a huge number of messages each day. WhatsApp’s message activity now surpasses SMS messaging, which handles only about 20 million text messages per day. WhatsApp is three times more popular than the traditional method of telling your mom you’ll be late for dinner.

16. Users spend an average of 195 minutes on WhatsApp weekly.

(Business Insider)

You could have spent those three hours visiting your parents.

Guilt-tripping aside, WhatsApp is pretty great. And it’s entirely possible you talk to your mom every day using this fancy little app, so that sort of counts as visiting. Right? 

17. In 2017, 75 billion messages were sent on New Year’s Eve alone.

(We Are Social Media)

Booze, dancing, drunken kisses, and instant messages! WhatsApp statistics show that partying is briefly interrupted to wish our loved ones a happy New Year. Once that duty is done, it’s perfectly fine to get back to your cocktail and dance till dawn.

18. 27% of all selfies are shared through WhatsApp and text messaging.

(Tech Infographics)

How are you going to show off your sassy new haircut if you don’t take a selfie and send it to all your friends? Well sure, you could go and see your friends like people did in the 20th century, but that requires time and planning, and you’re a busy bee! According to the WhatsApp number of users who send selfies, this is one of the easiest ways to show off your pretty face to your whole contact list. In addition to WhatsApp, people also use Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Snapchat for sharing selfies.

19. There were one billion groups on WhatsApp in 2016.

(The News Minute)

WhatsApp groups chat statistics show that this is one of the most popular WhatsApp features. You make a group, add all your buddies to it, have fun chatting excessively for the first few days, and then get annoyed when everyone starts spamming the group chat with awkward memes. We all have that one group full of ex-classmates where everyone but you seems to be sending messages 24/7, making your phone ping every few minutes until you finally mute it. 

20. 70% of WhatsApp users check the it daily.

(Facebook Newsroom)

Too often or not often enough? In truth, it makes complete sense for people to check their messaging apps once a day. After all, they help us stay in touch and easily exchange information with other people, so it’s no wonder that most of us stay up-to-date through WhatsApp. 

WhatsApp Countrywise User Statistics

21. India has the most WhatsApp users — 400 million.

(TechCrunch, Reuters)

WhatsApp is wildly popular in India. WhatsApp users by country stats show us that numbers keep growing each day, especially now that mobile networks are spreading and smartphones are becoming available to more people. Brazil also has a lot of users — 120 million. For a country with 210 million people, this is impressive. The countries with the highest market penetration are Netherlands (85%), followed by Spain (83.1%), and Italy (83%).

22. More than 73% of people who own smartphones in Saudi Arabia are active WhatsApp users.

(Hootsuite)

According to WhatsApp statistics, Saudi Arabia really loves this app. Most of the country’s residents who own a phone have it installed.

23. Only 19% of Canadians with a smartphone use WhatsApp.

(Hootsuite)

Apparently, Canadians are not too fond of WhatsApp. With merely 19% market penetration, WhatsApp has to try harder to establish itself in the Canadian market. 

24. Only 2 million people from China use WhatsApp.

(Vox)

According to chat statistics for WhatsApp apk, the Chinese prefer other messaging programs. WeChat, which has more than 490 million users in China alone and 900 million users worldwide, beats WhatsApp fair and square. One of the biggest reasons the Chines prefer WeChat is because of its end-to-end encryption, which makes it difficult for anyone except the sender and receiver to access messages. 

25. 58% of people with smartphones in the UK use WhatsApp.

(Hootsuite)

WhatsApp has been breaking through Britain’s market for several years now, and it’s slowly approaching Facebook Messenger’s 60% penetration rate. They’re neck-and-neck right now, and anything could happen.

26. WhatsApp is cited in 40% of Italy’s divorce cases as evidence against unfaithful partners.

(The Times of London)

Yes, this is absolutely our favorite stat on the list, thank you for asking. Apparently, WhatsApp is often used to facilitate infidelity. According to Gian Ettore Giassani from the Italian Association of Matrimony Lawyers, technology has made it easy for cheaters to communicate without the knowledge of their spouses. “Social media has boosted betrayal in Italy by making it easier, first through texting, Facebook, and now WhatsApp,” said Giassani in an interview with the London Times. 

Whether messaging apps make it easier to cheat or make it easier to catch cheaters is unclear, but Italians sure are using WhatsApp to its full potential. 

FAQ

Which country uses WhatsApp the most?

That would be India. With more than 400 million users, this is the hub of instant messaging. WhatsApp statistics for iPhone show that this app is frequently installed on iOS as well as Android devices in India.  

How do I check my WhatsApp stats?

This handy feature is easy to check for anyone who’s using WhatsApp Business. Simply go to WhatsApp business, tap More Options > Settings > Business Settings > Statistics. You should be able to see them now.

How WhatsApp is making money?

WhatsApp is an ad-free application because the creators didn’t want to bother users with ads. They initially charged $1 for a yearly subscription, but now the owners mostly earn money from WhatsApp Business. It lets business owners make a profile and use it to stay in contact with their consumers. But how does WhatsApp earn money from this? By charging companies for slow replies. If they reply in the first 24 hours, it’s free. If they want to send a reply to their customer after that, they get charged. WhatsApp statistics show that’s sufficient revenue to keep the app and its developers afloat.

Sources

Business Insider

CNET

Digital Information World

Facebook Newsroom

Feedough

Hootsuite

Investopedia

New York Times

Reuters

Statista

TechCrunch

Tech Infographics

Text Request

The News Minute

The Times of London

Vox

We Are Social Media

Wikipedia

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