Apps. They’re a dime a dozen. You could try out a different messaging app every day for a month and probably still have some left. There are only a few that really dominate the market, though. Two of them happen to be owned by Facebook: WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger.
Billions of people across the globe rely on these apps every single day. They use WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger to stay in touch with their loved ones. They use them to conduct business. So it’s a pretty big deal when both of them go offline across the globe for several hours.
Facebook’s troubles worked out well for Telegram
Monday was a pretty bad day for Facebook. It suffered a massive global outage that took Facebook, Messenger, WhatsApp and Instagram offline. Even communication tools that Facebook uses internally went down.
All of these services remained offline for more than six hours across the globe. That meant people suddenly had to find new apps to chat or make video and voice calls with. Telegram emerged as one of the leading alternatives.
Telegram CEO Pavel Durov revealed that during the time Facebook’s services were down, his app gained a “record” 70 million new users. No wonder he’s happy about it. Telegram is a direct competitor to WhatsApp and has been trying to poach its users for years.
“For the new users I’d like to say this – welcome to Telegram, the largest independent messaging platform,” Durov said, adding that “We won’t fail you when others will.”
Telegram was far from the only app that benefitted from Facebook’s apps going down. Encrypted messaging app Signal also confirmed picking up “millions” of new users. Other popular apps like Viber, Line and Kakao would also have seen an uptick in new signups.
The question remains how many of those 70 million users who signed up on Monday went back to WhatsApp or Facebook Messenger the moment they were back online. It’s not easy to switch messaging apps if everyone in your circle is using the same one.