Following Facebook’s acquisition of WhatsApp and its monetisation efforts, Chris Daniels, Vice President of the mobile messaging service, WhatsApp has confirmed that advertisements will be making its way into the messenger service.
Though he did not specify the timeline, Daniels confirmed that the advertisements will feature on its WhatsApp’s ‘Status’.
Facebook acquired the messenger in February 2014 for $19 billion.
However, WhatsApp co-founder, Brian Acton had expressed his opposition to monetisation via targeted apps, telling Forbes that it would compromise the assurance of encryption in the app’s messaging.
There had been speculations earlier in October that the Facebook-owned messaging app is planning to allow advertisements to be displayed in the ‘Status’ section of the app.
WhatsApp’s ‘Status’ feature allows users to share text, photos, videos and animated GIFs that disappear after 24 hours.
According to media reports, the advertisements would be powered by Facebook’s native advertising system and would be aimed at helping users understand and participate in businesses using the messaging app.
Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg’s goal to monetise WhatsApp has forced the social media messaging service’s co-founders to leave the company.
However, WhatsApp Vice President has said that; “We are going to be putting ads in ‘Status’. That is going to be primary monetisation mode for the company as well as an opportunity for businesses to reach people on WhatsApp.”
At the moment, it is still not clear how WhatsApp intends to gather user’s data for targeted ads since messages on WhatsApp are end-to-end encrypted, unless the company plans to compromise that.
WhatsApp has more than 1.5 billion global users and maintained its ad-free status until now, although it did experiment with an annual subscription fee several years ago, before it was acquired.