We’ve been steadily watching as Facebook increases its bias towards mobile-only users and it’s easy to understand why. Our mobile devices are far more portable compared with traditional desktop or laptop computers as they offer near-instant on and fit into our bag or pocket. Facebook on a mobile device has become one of the better distractions from whatever is on the television that we are really not interested in watching, but where we don’t want to leave the room to be seen as being unsocial. However, there’s another important reason and that’s because our smartphone, especially, and also our tablets, are very personal devices whereas something more substantial such as a laptop or desktop is more often shared with other people. That sense of ownership and immediacy is helping people who perhaps a few years ago would not have considered using a social network… To now use it from their mobile device.
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Facebook’s recent earnings report showed us that a total of 526 million of us access Facebook only from our mobile devices. By mobile devices, here Facebook mean the mobile application, mobile browser website, Facebook Messenger but not WhatsApp or Instagram. This is up from the 296 million who did the same this time last year and represents almost 40% of Facebook’s monthly user base of 1.4 billion. Taking a deeper look into the statistics, we see that 1.2 billion users access the service at least monthly from our mobile devices and there are almost 750 million daily Facebook mobile users. Facebook’s advertising revenue during the period was $3.59 billion and 69% off this came from the mobile side of things, which is up from a share of 53% this time last year.
Facebook have recognized this trend for some time now. The Facebook application has received many updates over the last year to improve the quality of the application. We’ve also seen Messenger split from the main application and Facebook are also experimenting with a new, cut down version of the application, Facebook Lite. Their advertising customers are also changing their business practices to better target mobile users too. It’s surprising that Facebook haven’t tried to develop their own smartphone and tablet range by now…