Facebook Hits 1.86 Billion Monthly Active Users as Earnings Surge

Facebook Hits 1.86 Billion Monthly Active Users as Earnings Surge

Facebook Hits 1.86 Billion Monthly Active Users as Earnings Surge
HIGHLIGHTS
Facebook said it made a net profit of $3.7 billion
Daily active users went up to 1.23 billion
India was a hot market in the fourth quarter
Facebook shares bounced Wednesday with word that profit more than doubled in the final quarter of last year, coming back down after a vow to spend heavily on the future.

In earnings that topped most forecasts, Facebook said it made a net profit of $3.7 billion (roughly Rs. 24,943 crores) on revenue of $8.6 billion (roughly Rs. 57,979 crores) in the fourth quarter, as compared with profit of $1.6 billion on $5.6 billion in revenue in the same period a year earlier.

Meanwhile, the number of people using the leading social network monthly increased 17 percent to 1.86 billion. The ranks of people accessing Facebook from mobile devices each month grew to 1.74 billion, an increase of 21 percent from the same period a year earlier. Daily active users went up to 1.23 billion, up 18 percent year on year, while mobile daily active users went up to 1.149 billion, up 23 percent year on year.

Money taken in from ads on mobile devices accounted for about 84 percent of the social network’s overall advertising revenue in the final quarter of last year.

“We believe concerns over user engagement and other social competitors are likely overblown, as few companies share Facebook’s combination of scale, strong technology orientation, and platform breath/diversity,” Baird research analyst Colin Sebastian said in a note to investors.

Facebook saw strong growth in Asia, with India being a hot market in the quarter. The social network still hopes to get into China, where the service is not allowed.

“Our mission is to connect everyone in the world and it’s hard to do that over the long term if we don’t find a way to serve the more than billion people who live in China,” Zuckerberg said while answering questions from analysts on an earnings call.

“But one of the big things that we need to think about here is of course we’re only going to do this in a he way that we’re comfortable with over the long term.”

Facebook shares jumped more than two percent in after-market trades, returning to 15 cents above the closing price of $133.23 after chief financial officer David Wehner reminded analysts that the social network has essentially run out of spare room for ads and plans to invest “aggressively.”

“Our business did well in 2016, but we have a lot of work ahead to help bring people together,” said Facebook co-founder and chief executive Mark Zuckerberg.

“Our mission to connect the world is more important now than ever.”

Tackling hoaxes
Under pressure to stymie the spread of fake news, Facebook last month modified its system for showing trending topics.

The change was intended to surface topics more quickly, capture a broader range of news, and help ensure that trends reflect real world events being covered by multiple news outlets.

Zuckerberg has sought to deflect criticism that the social network may have been used to fuel the spread of misinformation that influence the outcome of the 2016 US presidential race.
“We don’t write the news that you read but we want to be a place where people can access information and have meaningful conversations,” Zuckerberg said.

“In the past, we’ve taken steps to reduce spam and click-bait and now we’re you approaching misinformation and hoaxes the same way.”

Facebook executives expected spending on investment and hiring by the California-based company to leap 50 percent or so from last year.

Company priorities include data centers, virtual reality, search and artificial intelligence.

AI has the potential to help figure out and find videos or other content people might like at Facebook, and to quickly recognize and remove posts that violate community standards, according to Zuckerberg.

“There’s an increasing focus on objectionable content and a lot of unfortunate things that people share on Facebook,” Zuckerberg said, stressing that it was a small piece of what was is shared at the social network.

“AI is both going to be great for showing people content that’s really good and helping us enforce the community standards that we have to make sure that everyone has a good and fair experience.”

ALSO SEEFacebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg Posts Video of Jarvis Robot Assistant at Work

Stolen tech suit
Zuckerberg described virtual reality as a long-range investment and asked investors to be patient.

“We are going to keep making big investments in VR content and I’m excited about what’s coming they 2017, from new games to more immersive educational experiences,” Zuckerberg said.

A Texas jury Wednesday ordered Facebook and creators of its Oculus Rift to pay $500 million to gaming software firm ZeniMax in a lawsuit that claimed the virtual reality technology was stolen.

The lawsuit claimed Oculus founder Palmer Luckey and his colleagues developed the virtual reality gear using source code illegally obtained from the gaming firm.

ZeniMax had sought $4 billion in damages in the case, in which Zuckerberg testified to defend his company.

Facebook acquired Oculus in 2014 for more than $2 billion and last year began selling the Rift headsets as part of the social network’s push into virtual reality.

Tags: Facebook, Facebook Earnings, Facebook Users, Social, Apps, Oculus ZeniMax Trial

[“Source-Gadgets”]

Google Discloses Windows 10 Bug Under ‘Active Attack’; Microsoft Working on Fix

Google Discloses Windows 10 Bug Under 'Active Attack'; Microsoft Working on Fix

HIGHLIGHTS

  • Windows 10 vulnerability is win32k.sys system call
  • Google said it’s being “actively exploited”
  • Microsoft is unhappy with Google going public before patch

On Monday, Google’s Threat Analysis Group published details of a critical vulnerability in Microsoft’s Windows 10 that allows hackers to escape security sandboxes by using a system call with win32k.sys. The reason Google chose to go public with this knowledge is because it believes the vulnerability is being “actively exploited”.

Google had informed both Adobe and Microsoft of zero-day vulnerabilities only 10 days ago on October 21. While Adobe has already issued a patch for Flash – which is available via auto-updater or manual install – Microsoft has yet to send out an update for Windows 10 that blocks the use of this mechanism. And hence, as you’d expect, Microsoft isn’t happy with the disclosure.

“We believe in coordinated vulnerability disclosure, and today’s disclosure by Google puts customers at potential risk,” Microsoft conveyed to VentureBeat via a statement. “Windows is the only platform with a customer commitment to investigate reported security issues and proactively update impacted devices as soon as possible. We recommend customers use Windows 10 and the Microsoft Edge browser for the best protection.”Google’s short disclosure period for “vulnerabilities under active attack” came into effect in May 2013, bringing it down from 60 days to just a week. Google noted that 7 days might be “an aggressive timeline and may be too short for some vendors to update their products” but it justified the urgency of its disclosures by saying that it’s still enough time to inform users and give some advice.

Issuing a fix for a web plug-in such as Adobe Flash is obviously much easier than patching an operating system, which is why Google’s policy for vulnerabilities under active attack has remained controversial. For now, you should check to see Flash is updated and install Windows patches the moment Microsoft issues them.

Tags: Google, Microsoft, Windows 10, Adobe, Adobe Flash
[“Source-Gadgets”]

LG Tone Active+ Bluetooth Stereo Headset Announced Ahead of IFA 2016

LG Tone Active+ Bluetooth Stereo Headset Announced Ahead of IFA 2016

HIGHLIGHTS

  • The LG Tone Active+ is priced at roughly Rs. 12,100
  • LG is also showing off the LG Beetle Bluetooth wireless mouse
  • The LG Force HBS-S80 headset will also be demoed at IFA

LG has introduced new Bluetooth headsets just ahead of IFA 2016. The most important one is the Tone Active+ Bluetooth stereo headset. It will be available at a price of $179.99 (roughly Rs. 12,100), and will be demoed further at IFA 2016.

The Tone Active+ supports Bluetooth 4.2, and comes with IPX4 rating for water and sweat resistance. It comes with a quad-layer speaker technology and external stereo speakers. The Tone Active+ has a Qualcomm aptX/Qualcomm aptX HD audio codec for 24-bit lossless audio and a Digital MEMS microphone for voice calling.

LG says the earbuds on the Tone Active+ slide out in a way that makes them fit comfortably in the ears, and then just slide back in once the user is done with it. These new retraceable earbuds essentially aim to reduce the need for chord management. The wireless headset comes with a rechargeable battery that claims to give you 13 hours of talk time (speaker mode up to 9.5 hours) and up to 17.9 days of standby time.

Alongside the LG Tone Active+, the company is also going to demo many other accessories. The HBS-A80 entry-level Bluetooth headset, and the HBS-820S Bluetooth headset with one external speaker will be showcased at the commercial fair. There’s also the LG Force HBS-S80 headset which comes with earring shaped-buds made of silicone. Lastly, LG is also looking to showcase the LG Beetle wireless mouse. It supports Bluetooth, and the big talking point of the mouse is the interchangeable covers. LG is making the removable covers available in Grey, Lime, Indigo, Mint, and Pink.

x

Apart from LG, Sony is also hosting an event ahead of IFA on September 1. The company is widely expected to launch the Sony Xperia X Compact, and the Sony Xperia XZ at the event.

Share a screenshot and win Samsung smartphones worth Rs. 90,000 by participating in the #BrowseFaster contest.

Tags: LG, Mobiles, Android, LG Tone Active, LG Bluetooth Headsets, LG HBS-A80 Bluetooth headset,LG HBS-820S Bluetooth Headset, LG HBS-S80 Bluetooth Headset, LG Beetle Wireless Mouse

[“Source-Gadgets”]

Facebook Messenger Hits 1 Billion Monthly Active Users

Facebook Messenger Hits 1 Billion Monthly Active Users

HIGHLIGHTS

  • Facebook has more than 1.6 billion users worldwide
  • Facebook’s WhatsApp too has crossed over 1 billion monthly active users
  • Instagram and Oculus too have a wide user base worldwide

Facebook said Wednesday the number of users of its Messenger application had topped one billion, a key milestone as it seeks to expand the platform to new services.

The growth in Messenger gives greater reach to Facebook, which is moving to create a “family” of applications beyond the social network.

“As part of this journey to one billion, we focused on creating the best possible experiences in modern day communications,” said Facebook vice president David Marcus in a statement.

“We remain focused on helping connect people to the people and businesses who matter most.”

Facebook itself has more than 1.6 billion users, and WhatsApp, another messaging application acquired by Facebook for some $20 billion in 2014, also counts more than a billion users.

Other services in the Facebook “family” include Instagram, which more than 500 million use to share images, and Oculus, which makes virtual reality gear.

x

Marcus told AFP that Messenger’s key markets include North America, Australia, Britain, France, the Philippines, Thailand and several other European countries.

Facebook has been moving to make Messenger a “platform” with other services such as “bots” that deliver news or connect with retailers or other businesses, for example.

Marcus said Messenger has some 18,000 active bots and continues to expand the platform.

Messenger can help monetization because it keeps users in the Facebook ecosystem where they can be targeted with ads.

“We will see that happens in the coming months, but I think that once you have an ecosystem that starts working between businesses and so many users on Messenger, we’ll find more monetization vectors in the future,” Marcus said.

“But we aren’t at the stage where we are rushing to monetize.”

WhatsApp, which is managed independently, does not accept advertising but is exploring ways to allow businesses to use it to connect with customers.

According to the company, Messenger is the second most popular application in Apple’s iOS system behind Facebook itself.

Facebook said more than 17 billion photos are sent to friends through Messenger every month and that Messenger users have played 1.2 billion games of virtual basketball.

Tags: Apps, Facebook, Facebook Messenger, Messenger, Social

 

[“Source-Gadgets”]