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Facebook Puts $19 Billion Bet On WhatsApp06:01

This article is more than 6 years old.

Facebook is placing a $19 billion bet on reaching its next billion mobile users with the acquisition of WhatsApp, a popular messaging service that lets people send texts, photos and videos on their smartphones.

The $19 billion deal is by far Facebook's largest and bigger than any that Google, Microsoft or Apple have ever done. But it is likely to raise worries that Facebook and other technology companies are starting to become overzealous in their pursuit of promising new products and services.

Facebook, for its part, is taking the long view. WhatsApp has 450 million monthly users, 70 percent of whom use it every day. The service is adding a million new users a day. There are 19 billion messages sent and 34 billion received via WhatsApp each day, in addition to 600 million photos and 100 million video messages.

Here & Now's Jeremy Hobson discusses the deal with Derek Thompson of The Atlantic. He also speaks with Alex Sherman of Bloomberg News:


This segment aired on February 20, 2014.

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