F8 started with a family photo. But not of the Zuckerbergs. Of Facebook’s products. “Facebook used to be this one blue app on your phone, and now Facebook is a family of apps” said its CEO as he showed off the user counts of the different family members. Facebook Groups with 700 million. WhatsApp with 700 million. Messenger with 600 million. Instagram with 300 million. And the patriarch, Facebook, with 1.4 billion.
Rather than just being a social network, Facebook sees strength as an interconnected clan of experiences — developed in-house, acquired, and tapped in from outside.
The subtext of Zuck’s “family” quote is that one app can’t do everything. On mobile, people want lean, purpose-driven experiences. Cramming everything into a one-size-fits-all can make it slow and bloated.
But when you’re talking about trying to connect every human on earth, a singularly focused app alone can’t possibly meet the diverse needs of…
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