Welcome to Episode 69 of our podcast! In this Meta Month special, we’re delving deep into the world of Meta, the parent company of Facebook and a host of other influential brands. Join us as we explore the history, acquisitions, and impact of this technological giant.
Segment 1: The Birth of Meta
- Meta, originally known as Facebook, was founded in 2004 by Mark Zuckerberg and three Harvard University friends.
- Initially limited to Harvard students, the platform’s popularity skyrocketed, leading to rapid expansion to other universities.
- In 2005, the company acquired the domain facebook.com and rebranded, dropping “The” from its name.
Segment 2: Building a Monolith
- Meta’s growth strategy involved acquiring numerous companies to expand its reach and influence.
- Notable acquisitions include Instagram (2012), WhatsApp (2014), and Oculus VR (2014).
- Instagram was purchased for $1 billion and became one of the highest-priced acquisitions of a profitless startup at the time.
- WhatsApp’s acquisition for $19 billion was initially seen as a risk but has since proven its value.
- Oculus VR’s acquisition for $2 billion positioned Meta as a player in the virtual reality market.
Segment 3: The Meta Rebrand
- To streamline branding and clarify its identity, Meta emerged as the parent company in October 2021, overseeing Facebook and its acquired brands.
Segment 4: The Revenue Machine
- Meta’s platforms are free for users, with revenue generated primarily through paid advertising.
- In 2022, Meta’s revenue reached an impressive $116 billion, although there was a slight decline due to substantial investments in the Metaverse, its virtual reality prototype.
Segment 5: Exploring the Metaverse
- Meta has invested $36 billion in developing the Metaverse, an ambitious concept with no operational prototype as of now.
- Drawing comparisons to the fictional world of “Ready Player One,” the Metaverse aims to revolutionize virtual experiences.
Segment 6: Popularity and Influence
- Facebook remains the dominant social media platform with nearly 3 billion monthly active users, surpassing even the global population.
- WhatsApp boasts 2.7 billion users, while Instagram follows closely with 2.35 billion.
- Messenger, another Meta-owned platform, boasts 931 million users.
Segment 7: The Power Players
- Meta is part of an elite group known as “The 4,” along with Alphabet (Google), Amazon, and Apple.
- Microsoft was formerly included but withdrew due to differences in data collection practices.
Segment 8: Threads’ Triumph
- In 2023, Meta made a significant comeback with the launch of Threads under the Instagram brand.
- Threads, designed to rival Twitter (now rebranded as X), garnered an astounding 100 million users within just five days.
- The platform enables users to share posts in concise text format, complemented by images and videos, while excluding in-app editing and messaging functions.
Check out my podcast episode on Threads here
Thank you for tuning in to this episode of our podcast. Stay tuned for more captivating insights into Meta and its evolution throughout this Meta Month!