Facebook’s (NASDAQ: FB) Vice President of Partnerships Dan Rose gave a session at AllThingsD’s "D: Dive Into Media Conference” on Tuesday, where he spoke candidly about the future of Facebook. Here are three important tidbits to take away from his presentation:
'So many things are unlocked on mobile. You don’t bring your computer to a restaurant or a party.'
Rose makes an excellent point: People are starting to replace computers with smartphones, and companies need to keep up. On Facebook’s last earnings report, the company announced that the number of active daily visitors checking their Facebook accounts on their mobile devices surpassed the number of users who log into Facebook on their computers for the first time in the history of the social network. Specific statistics show that out of the 1.06 billion active Facebook users, 618 million visit the site daily and 157 million are doing so from their phones. These stats clearly show why Facebook needs to work on having a better mobile experience for the user, and it seems like Rose understands why. It looks like Facebook is trying to create a unique mobile experience that can’t be replicated on desktop computers, probably because the mobile market is becoming so lucrative for the company as it continues to grow.
'That number is only going to continue to grow.'
Number of mobile users? Nope. Actually, the figure Rose is referring to is the number of clicks Facebook sends to the Apple App Store and Google Play. Currently, Facebook sends 180 million clicks per month to the two digital marketplaces, and it can become quite a profitable venture for the company, which has seen its stock fall on and off since its IPO almost a year ago.
Rose anticipates that the figure will continue to grow, which means the company will obviously continue to collect a larger revenue from these partnerships, which should bolster Facebook's overall bottom line. Shareholders were disappointed at Facebook’s IPO last May and were concerned with the company’s sources of revenue at the time. Now, with mobile advertising accounting for 23 percent of Facebook’s total ad revenue, shareholders are pleased, but another source of income couldn’t hurt.
'I don’t think we’ve walked away from Zynga at all.'
The relationship between Facebook and Zynga (NASDAQ: ZNGA) has been well-documented, but recently it seems that both companies have been neglecting the partnership. Back in 2011, Zynga accounted for 12 percent of Facebook’s revenue, but in November 2012, Facebook ended the company’s special agreement with Zynga. However, Rose maintains that Facebook and Zynga are still working closely and focusing on mobile gaming.
“They are looking to diversify into mobile,” Rose said. “We spent the last year really pivoting hard and becoming a mobile company. We still spend a lot of time with Zynga.”
Zynga remains one of Facebook's biggest developers for the company’s desktop platform, but going into the mobile business is a solid move for Zynga, which has seen its stock price drop consistently over the past year. Zynga improving its own mobile presence is important for improving the company’s revenue and stock price.
The New York Times recently published an article talking about Zynga and its mobile products. In an interview with CEO Mark Pincus after his company's earnings call, Pincus said, “Do I wish that we would have gone all-in on mobile and made a bigger commitment to it earlier? Yes.” Pincus also said 2013 would focus on long-term growth in the mobile gaming industry.
Zynga has been going through some growing pains trying to go mobile. Draw Something was purchased by Zynga last March for $180 million during the apex of the app’s popularity. The app was a huge success, registering 15 million daily users, but, as soon as Zynga bought them, fans defected for the newest fad. The current number of users is unknown, but the New York Times says the figure is still shrinking.
Rose spoke about a number of other issues as well, including the relationships between Facebook users and developers and Facebook’s role as a social discovery engine. Visit AllFacebook to read more about Rose’s presentation.