Facebook officially reached 1 billion monthly active users Sept. 14 at 12:45 p.m. PT, Co-Founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg revealed in a post on the social network’s Newsroom, as well as in an interview with NBC’s Matt Lauer, and in a cover story for Bloomberg Businessweek.
The social network said during its second-quarter earnings call July 26 that it had reached 955 million monthly average users, so it was only a matter of time before the milestone occurred.
Facebook offered more statistics in a Word document attached to Zuckerberg’s Newsroom post:
- More than 1.13 trillion likes since launching the feature in February 2009.
- 140.3 billion friend connections.
- 219 billion photos uploaded, with that figure reaching around 265 billion if deleted photos are added to the total. Photo uploading launched on Facebook in the fall of 2005.
- 17 billion location-tagged posts, including check-ins, since the launch of the feature in August 2010.
- Since music-listening applications launched in September 2011, 62.6 million songs have been played 22 billion times, representing about 210,000 years of music.
- The median age of Facebook users is about 22.
- The top five countries in terms of people connected when the 1 billion mark was reached, in alphabetical order, were Brazil, India, Indonesia, Mexico, and the U.S.
- The social network also surpassed 600 million mobile users.
Zuckerberg wrote in his Newsroom post:
This morning, there are more than 1 billion people using Facebook actively each month.
If you’re reading this: Thank you for giving me and my little team the honor of serving you.
Helping 1 billion people connect is amazing, humbling, and by far the thing I am most proud of in my life.
I am committed to working every day to make Facebook better for you, and hopefully, together, one day, we will be able to connect the rest of the world, too.
Highlights from Zuckerberg’s interview with Lauer — which aired on “Today” Thursday morning and is set to air on “Rock Center with Brian Williams” Thursday night — include:
To be able to come into work every day and build things that help 1 billion people stay connected with the people they care about every month, that’s just unbelievable.
Things go in cycles. We’re obviously in a tough cycle now, and that doesn’t help morale, but at the same time, you know, people here are focused on the things that they’re building. I mean, you get to build things here that touch 1 billion people, which is just not something that you can say at almost anywhere else, so I think that’s really the thing that motivates people.
I take this responsibility that I have really seriously, and I really think Facebook needs to be focused on building the best experiences for people around the world, right? And we have this philosophy that building the products and services and building the business go hand-in-hand.
There are 5 billion people in the world who have phones, so we should be able to serve many more people and grow the user base there.
I mean, (late Apple CEO Steve Jobs) was just so focused, right? I mean for him, the user experience was the main thing that mattered, the only thing that mattered, and I think that there’s a lot that every company can learn from that. We’ve had a lot of that philosophy, too, which is we just want to stay maniacally focused on building the best product for those people, and I think that’s the path to building a great business and, you know, I think that’s something that Steve understood more than most.
Our responsibility as a company is just to do the best that we can and build the best products for people. If we build the best products, then I think that we can continue leading in this space for a long time.
And in an interview with Ashlee Vance for the cover story of the next issue of Bloomberg Businessweek, Zuckerberg said:
(When Facebook reached the 1 billion user mark), everyone came together and counted down. Then we all went back to work … We’re having a hackathon to celebrate this when we announce it publicly, and the theme is going to be the next billion. So, people thinking of ideas and working on prototypes and things that we’ll need to do to help connect the next billion people, which I think is pretty cool.
There are already trillions of connections between friend requests and all of the content that’s being pushed into the system. At some point, that will start to be a better map of how you navigate the Web than the traditional link structure of the Web.
(While at Harvard University creating “the first version of Facebook”) We were talking about how we thought one day someone would build something like this for the whole world, but we just never could even imagine that we’d be a part of that because from that perspective, it was like we were just these college students, and who were we to build this big thing? Clearly, there are other companies that are used to building software at scale, and one of them will do it.
The reflection I have on it is that looking back, I just think we cared more. I mean it’s like at each step along the way, this was the thing that we wanted to exist.
Finally, AdAge reported that Facebook officially named Wieden & Kennedy in Portland, Ore., as its global agency of record, and the agency’s first effort for the social network was “The Things That Connect Us,” which, as described by AdAge, “opens with a series of artful, emotional vignettes of people sitting and interacting on chairs — before moving on to other objects and events through which folks come together, such as a doorbell, airplanes, bridges, or a basketball game — the point being that all these things exist, perhaps, to remind us that we’re not alone.”
Facebook Head of Consumer Marketing Rebecca Van Dyck told AdAge:
What we’re trying to articulate is that we as humans exist to connect, and we at Facebook to facilitate and enable that process. We make the tools and services that allow people to feel human, get together, open up. Even if it’s a small gesture, or a grand notion — we wanted to express that huge range of connectivity and how we interact with each other.
Readers: Will reaching 1 billion monthly average users mark the high point for Facebook, or is there room for the social network to continue to grow?