How Does WhatsApp Make Money?

WhatsApp Make Money

WhatsApp is a messaging and communication app that uses a phone’s cellular or Wi-Fi connection to make video and voice calls around the world. This is a multiplatform messaging app owned by Facebook, Inc. WhatsApp has more than 2 billion users and this app is completely free to use. Moreover, it has also surpassed Facebook’s messenger and Instagram and become the 2nd biggest property after Facebook. WhatsApp doesn’t earn revenue through advertisements so the big question is how does WhatsApp make money?

Initially, WhatsApp charged $1 for a year subscription however, since 2016 WhatsApp started to offer all its services completely free. Now, the majority of WhatsApp’s revenue is generated through Database Management. Other income sources of WhatsApp are WhatsApp for business API, WhatsApp payment service, etc.      

WhatsApp Features

Here are the main features of WhatsApp:

1. WhatsApp offers a free, simple, and reliable messaging and communication service

2. Allows users to create groups so that they can keep in touch with people that matter the most

3. It is available on the Web and desktop so you can seamlessly sync all of your chats to your computer

4. WhatsApp offers free video call and voice calls all over the world

5. WhatsApp has an end-to-end encryption feature that provides the highest level of security by default

6. You can send photos and videos instantly on WhatsApp and share the moment that matters

7. WhatsApp allows you to record a voice message and then send it to your friend and family

8. It allows the users to share PDFs, documents, spreadsheets, slideshows, and more and supports file size of up to 100 MB

Important Statistics About WhatsApp

WhatsApp is a very popular app with more than two billion users worldwide and India alone has 390 million WhatsApp users. WhatsApp is downloaded over five billion times on Android and iOS. Moreover, WhatsApp has made between $5 and $10 billion in profit for Facebook in 2020.

Overview Of WhatsApp

Launch date24 February 2009
HeadquarterMenlo Park, California
PeopleWill Cathcart (head of WhatsApp), Brian Acton (co-founder), Jan Koum (co-founder)
IndustryCommunication
Business typeSubsidiary
OwnerFacebook

Revenue Of WhatsApp

YearTotal Revenue
2014$1 million
2016$0.2 billion
2018$1.3 billion
2020$5.5 billion

Users Of WhatsApp

YearTotal Users
20130.2 billion
20140.5 billion
20150.8 billion
20161 billion
20171.3 billion
20181.5 billion
20191.8 billion
20202 billion

WhatsApp Total Downloads

YearTotal Downloads
20130.5 billion
20140.8 billion
20151.2 billion
20162 billion
20172.9 billion
20183.4 billion
20194.3 billion
20204.9 billion

How WhatsApp Makes Money

Facebook bought WhatsApp in 2014 for $19 billion and it creates a huge reaction in the tech world. Mostly because the amount Facebook paid was large and many experts wonder how Facebook will generate revenue from WhatsApp because it’s a free app and all the services are also free. When Facebook bought WhatsApp, users had to pay 99p every year to use the app. Then, in 2016 Facebook made WhatsApp completely free to use and they also stated that they are looking for new features that would allow them to make money from WhatsApp. Some of these features are:

1. WhatsApp for Business API

2. WhatsApp Payment Service     

3. Database Management    

WhatsApp For Business API

This is an excellent revenue-earning product of WhatsApp because it makes WhatsApp more proficient. In 2018, WhatsApp launched WhatsApp Business, especially for businesses. With this business app, users can create a business profile, add links to their websites, and integrate the WhatsApp for Business API. Moreover, they will have a verified profile on WhatsApp. So the new WhatsApp business will help the businesses to reach out to a new customer base. The WhatsApp Business app is free to use but the API integration of the app is a large revenue source. The API will help the businesses because with it business owners can send shipping confirmations or provide event tickets. The customers can send direct messages to various businesses through WhatsApp business. If the business responds to messages from customers after 24 hours then they have to pay for every message they sent.

According to WhatsApp:

“We will test tools that allow you to use WhatsApp to communicate with businesses and organizations that you want to hear from. The goal is to have people communicate directly with their banks, airlines, etc. over the app, while the businesses pick up the bill previously paid through subscriptions.”

WhatsApp Payment Service     

WhatsApp introduced its payments service named WhatsApp Pay. The introduction of WhatsApp Pay has increased the market position of WhatsApp and it also steals a good chunk of Snapchat’s customer base. Moreover, WhatsApp is trying to follow the revenue model of Snapchat and they are planning to introduce features that utilize videos, texts, and photos to promote their company. 

Database Management    

This is another big source of income for WhatsApp because when users use WhatsApp for communication, WhatsApp backs up all the information on their servers. Usually, the conversations reflect the likes, dislikes and majorly depict the preferences of people. This type of information has great value to big firms because they can analyze the data of a user and offer products that they might be looking for. So the amount of data WhatsApp has on their server, many big companies will be willing to pay handsome amounts of money for information extraction.

FAQs About WhatsApp

1. How Much Is WhatsApp Worth In 2020?

According to Forbes, the valuation of WhatsApp in 2020 was $5.5 billion.

2. What Countries Use WhatsApp The Most?

WhatsApp is used in 180 countries around the world. Among these countries the top 10 countries with the most WhatsApp users are:

3. What Countries Use WhatsApp The Most?

WhatsApp is used in 180 countries around the world. Among these countries the top 10 countries with the most WhatsApp users are:

1. India: 390 million
2. Brazil: 108 million
3. United States: 75 million
4. Indonesia: 68 million
5. Russia: 64 million
6. Mexico: 62 million
7. Germany: 48 million
8. Italy: 35 million
9. Spain: 33 million
10. United Kingdom: 30 million         

4. How Does A Free App Make Money?

There are man6y ways a free app can make money. Some commonly used methods are:

1. In-app purchases
2. Affiliate Income
3. Subscription
4. Freemium content
5. Advertisement
6. Selling the API

5. What Is The Difference Between WhatsApp And Business WhatsApp?

WhatsApp business is completely separate from official WhatsApp. Though WhatsApp business works quite similar to WhatsApp but its purpose is different. WhatsApp business’s main purpose is to connect the businesses and the customers. WhatsApp introduced the WhatsApp business for small business owners.

6. How Much Does WhatsApp Business Cost?

WhatsApp Business is free to download and it is built for smaller businesses. You will require WhatsApp business API to integrate your website and other social media account with your WhatsApp business profile. Unlike the WhatsApp business, WhatsApp business API is not free. The monthly fees for WhatsApp business API range between $49 and $499.

7. Is WhatsApp Business Any Good For A Business?

WhatsApp has a huge number of users that a business can utilize to grow brand awareness as well as increase the sell and profit. Below are some reasons, WhatsApp business is good for a business:

8. Can I Use WhatsApp Business And WhatsApp On The Same Phone?

Yes, you can use WhatsApp Business and WhatsApp on the same phone. Both WhatsApp and WhatsApp Business are separate apps that you have to download separately if you want to use them. However, if you want to use both apps on the same mobile then you have to ensure that both the accounts are linked to different phone numbers.

9. Can WhatsApp Business Be Used For Personal Use?

No, you can’t use the WhatsApp business for personal use. WhatsApp business is only available for small businesses.

Last Updated on May 30, 2021 by Musa D

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