There have been lots of back-to-back privacy scandals on Facebook for the past years, including a spread of negative news that won’t stop. However, the company’s earnings sheet tells a different story.
Facebook’s fourth-quarter earnings report indicates that the social media giant did a double. It exceeded revenue expectations and as well had massive growth in users. As of December 2018, Facebook daily active user base was over 1.52 billion, according to the report. This is about 9 percent increase year over year. Facebook also recorded 2.32 billion monthly active users. That’s also a year over year growth of 9 percent.
Evaluating with its previous quarterly report, those figures rose by 1.8 percent. This implies that Facebook has ended a three-month stretch of users declined in the US and Europe. The current growth recorded by Facebook in this quarter is notably its best so far. However, it does not imply that the social media giant has returned to its usual upward trend, though this show it might be in the process.
Achieving those numbers in 2018 – a year marked with high-profile privacy and safety issues is a lot of achievement. Among the many troubles include the Cambridge Analytical scandal, a data breach that handed login details of some 50 million users to hackers, and the accusation of helping to spread hate speech in Myanmar.
The numbers of Facebook daily active users in the US and Europe was either flat or went down in previous its quarters, according to the company’s report. However, Facebook saw the number of users increase specifically in these regions in this quarter. The company announced that each month, a new high of 2.7 billion people used Facebook, Instagram, WhatsApp, or Messenger. The statistics show that 2 billion of these number made use of at least one of those four services once a day.
Things weren’t all rosy in the quarter though. Jack Nicas noted on Twitter that Facebook also recorded large numbers of fake and duplicated accounts. There were about 116 million fake accounts while duplicate accounts on the site were 255 million.
On the financial aspect, Facebook made a significant improvement. The revenue for the quarter was $16.91 billion, which is more than estimations by analysts. Profit was also more than estimates at $2.38 per share. Following the announcement, Facebook shares grew by over 6 percent.
The significant of the numbers are obvious. Regardless of the perception of the public about Facebook as a company, the company seems to be doing well on its own.