Facebook users spend a lot more time watching videos, and short videos like Instagram Reels are growing fast. Speaking during the company’s call for earnings in the second quarter, CEO Mark Zuckerberg said that “the video now makes up almost half of the entire time spent on Facebook.” And on Instagram, competitor TikTok Reels is “the biggest contributor to the growth of engagement.”
Although it has stopped sharing more accurate statistics, new details suggest that Instagram reels may be gaining more and more appeal as the company competes for the talent of the creator. Zuckerberg also noted that the company’s focus on creators and purchasing will also help it achieve its long-term goal of becoming a “space company.”
Facebook revealed earlier this week that it was eavesdropping on Instagram to launch a new team focused on creating a metaverse. “You can somehow think of it as the embodied Internet you’re on, instead of just watching,” Zuckerberg said. “You’ll basically be able to do everything you can on the Internet today, as well as some things that don’t make sense on the Internet today like dancing.”
Zuckerberg’s comments come when the company reported the strongest growth in years, with revenue of more than $ 29 billion, an increase of 56 percent over last year. The company also reported more than 3.5 billion “monthly active people,” although user growth in the U.S. again remained unchanged.
Despite strong numbers this quarter, the company warned that the rest of 2021 could look completely different. Facebook expects revenue and growth to “slow down significantly” in the second half of the year, said CFO Dave Wehner. He also noted that Apple’s update to iOS 14.5, which allows users to opt out of tracking ads on social media, would have a “bigger impact” in the coming quarter.
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