It seems like social media giant Facebook is taking a back seat with its plan to include ads on WhatsApp’s Status page later this year. According to a report coming in from WSJ, the company has disbanded the team working to insert ads in WhatsApp and has also removed all the related code.
However, the report says that ads are not gone for good. Facebook plans to bring ads into WhatsApp in the future, perhaps with a different strategy. So, it’s just a matter of time.
Because of Facebook’s plan to monetize WhatsApp after it was acquired for a whooping $22 billion in 2014, the app’s co-founder Jan Koun departed from the company in 2018. Brian Acton, another co-founder of WhatsApp had left the firm months prior because of clashes within, related to privacy and targeted advertising.
Currently, it’s not clear why Facebook has decided to put its WhatsApp ads efforts on hold. It seems that instead of advertising, the company is focusing more on development of robust features for the business users. And those business users could perhaps be one of the avenues to actually start some degree of monetisation.
WhatsApp Business allows businesses to connect directly with customers and the company is charging a small ‘per message’ fee to host or facilitate this direct conversation with customers. But the company has not revealed how much money this generates but it is likely to be far less than the company could generate through advertising.