Feeds

Facebook claims 100 MEEELLION active users in India

Who needs China when you've got the next billion in your sights?

Boost IT visibility and business value

Who needs China? Facebook this week announced that its active user base in India passed 100 million – the first country to do so since the US of A.

The Social Network's VP of “growth”, Javier Olivan, said that the social network would now work with the mobile industry to nudge that figure up to one billion, according to local rag the Economic Times.

Mobile is key to the future success of Facebook in emerging markets like India, where fixed line connections are relatively scarce compared to the number of users signing up to the service on their handsets.

That’s why it’s pushing its internet.org initiative, begun last year, which has seen it partner up with six mobile companies to subsidise basic mobile web services and “bring the internet to the two thirds of the world’s population that doesn’t have it”.

Zuckerberg and co’s $19bn purchase of camera phone social site WhatsApp also highlights just how important the firm sees the channel.

"The first device that people will have to enter a connected world in India is a low-end mobile phone," said Olivan on a call attended by ET. "If you go to review a product and start with a desktop version, Mark will kick you out. Everybody has to think mobile."

The next challenge, to which many commentators have already pointed, will be in monetising those 100 million Indian users, and others in regions not known for generating big spenders.

In many ways India, as well as Indonesia and the fastest growing Latin American countries topped by Brazil, offer the best chance Facebook has of maintaining an incredible growth spurt which has seen its user base grow to over 1.2 billion.

This is especially true given that China and its 600m+ internet users aren’t allowed to access the service, legally at least, and in any case prefer homegrown alternatives.

As part of ongoing efforts to ingratiate itself with the people of the sub-continent, Facebook this week launched an "I'm a voter" feature allowing voters in the the 2014 Lok Sabha elections to pot special election day messages this week. ®

Using blade systems to cut costs and sharpen efficiencies

More from The Register

next story
Auntie remains MYSTIFIED by that weekend BBC iPlayer and website outage
Still doing 'forensics' on the caching layer – Beeb digi wonk
Apple orders huge MOUNTAIN of 80 MILLION 'Air' iPhone 6s
Bigger, harder trouser bulges foretold for fanbois
GoTenna: How does this 'magic' work?
An ideal product if you believe the Earth is flat
Telstra to KILL 2G network by end of 2016
GSM now stands for Grave-Seeking-Mobile network
Seeking LTE expert to insert small cells into BT customers' places
Is this the first step to a FON-a-like 4G network?
Yorkshire cops fail to grasp principle behind BT Fon Wi-Fi network
'Prevent people that are passing by to hook up to your network', pleads plod
BlackBerry: Toss the server, mate... BES is in the CLOUD now
BlackBerry Enterprise Services takes aim at SMEs - but there's a catch
prev story

Whitepapers

Top three mobile application threats
Prevent sensitive data leakage over insecure channels or stolen mobile devices.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Designing a Defense for Mobile Applications
Learn about the various considerations for defending mobile applications - from the application architecture itself to the myriad testing technologies.
Build a business case: developing custom apps
Learn how to maximize the value of custom applications by accelerating and simplifying their development.