Can WhatsApp become Facebook’s Gmail?

and why context is still king…

Nebojsa Radovic
2 min readFeb 20, 2014


There has been a solid amount of coverage for the latest Facebook’s acquisition. Given the price tag, it’s no strange that people are starting to question the decision. But, lets look at the problem from a different perspective.

Context is still king

And there is no difference here between mobile and web. Ads in Gmail are not as aggressive as those on network websites, but the context about users this service provides is of great value to the company. Scraping the emails helps Google understand its users and their needs better, which directly implies to the effectiveness of its ad solutions.

No Ads, No Games, No Gimmicks

There is no need for them. WhatsApps’ data put in action will help Facebook get even more info about its users — device, carrier, location info + everything they talk about with friends. Pairing this info with Facebook data could be easily done through unique phone IDs or phone numbers, and the result would probably be the most comprehensive database on mobile users in the world.

Serious privacy issues? Again, no reason to worry, Google already figured out most of the things.

All you say is fine, but dude 19B?!?

Was it overpaid? Probably. But was it without reason? Wouldn’t say so. It’s hard to believe Facebook made a decision that is not thought out well. They want to dominate the mobile space in the same manner Google dominated the web. They have already proven they are able to monetize mobile better than anybody else, and now it’s all on getting more data and inventory. WhatsApp provides both and, more importantly, gives Facebook a competitive advantage others won’t be able to match soon.

The original article can be found on Svbtle.



Nebojsa Radovic

Everything mobile growth — user acquisition, retention, monetization. aka > @eniac