WhatsAppening Twitter? WhatApp user base exceeds Twitter’s 200m

When we think about communication in 2013, we instantly think of social media and the influence that players such as Facebook and Twitter have over the way we send and receive information. We’re less inclined to think about instant the instant text messaging service, WhatsApp, which still seems niche in comparison to the social giants. But as CEO Jan Koum was keen to point out in an interview with All Things Digital, WhatsApp has not only overtaken Twitter in terms of users, but also now handles nearly 20 billion messages a day, double that of Facebook.

Despite the App’s impressive growth, Jan Koum remains determined to avoid commercial temptations influencing their direction. Not only are they determined to remain independent, reportedly rejecting takeover attempts by the likes of Facebook and Google, but they also refuse to compromise the user experience with advertising.

“Who likes advertising?” Asks Koum rhetorically. “Putting advertising on a device like that is a bad idea….. Our monetization strategy is simple. One dollar a year. If we did something besides that, it would just get in the way. … We want a great product and great user experience.”

In a world where we are exposed to literally thousands of adverts and marketing messages a day, you can’t help but admire the purity of their offering. Let’s see how long it lasts….

Dan