Meta Platforms – statistics & facts

Meta’s bread and butter

Meta Platforms own social media giants Facebook, Instagram, WhatsApp, and Messenger amongst others, all of which are household names that continue to see user growth. Meta’s social networks are known as its Family of Apps (FoA). As of the fourth quarter of 2023, they attracted almost four billion users per month. Meta’s Threads, released in July 2023, was compared in the media to X (formerly Twitter), due to its text-based concept. The service accumulated an impressive 100 million sign-ups within five days of its release. Additionally, Threads went on to earn a spot as one of the fastest mobile apps to reach 150 million downloads. As of the fourth quarter of 2023, Threads had reached over 130 million monthly active users.

Let the money talk

Meta generated a notable 134.9 billion U.S. dollars in annual revenue in 2023, the company’s highest ever reported revenue, up from 116 billion U.S. dollars for the fiscal year 2022. Furthermore, around 98.5 percent of Meta’s annual revenue is generated by its Family of Apps, with the remaining 1.5 percent being generated by Reality Labs. The majority of Meta’s revenue is produced through advertising.

Not all plain sailing

Meta’s success has not been without problems, which have often resulted in hefty fines. Although the Cambridge Analytica scandal in 2018 seems like a thing of the past, 2022 and 2023 brought numerous penalties for Meta, with the breaking of several EU data protection and privacy laws. In May 2023, Meta was fined 1.2 billion euros by the Irish Data Protection Commission (DPC) for putting the data of EU citizens at risk through EU-U.S. data transfers, making this the fourth fine that the company has received from the DPC.

Taking into consideration the charges and accusations of inadequate action surrounding content regulation, public opinion is split. Although Facebook is in many ways the most successful and well-known social media platform, a positive impression is not assured. As of May 2022, 20 percent of U.S. adults reported having a very favorable opinion of Meta’s Facebook, whilst 19 percent reported having a very unfavorable opinion of the platform.

Twenty years in the making, and Meta Platforms is undeniably ahead of the competition, yet it continues to grapple with data security, privacy, and positive brand perception.

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