After a year marked by scandal, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg has admitted that his brainchild "may be close to saturated in developed countries". He also cautioned that, while the quarterly results showed Facebook was continuing to grow, revenue was likely to slow in the near future.
The social media service is currently used by an 2.27 billion people across the world, but growth is mainly coming from developing countries, as Facebook revealed that user rates in the US and Europe remained static.
However, despite recent revelations that the company had lost 30% of its value in just four months, Zuckerberg also revealed that the company has posted a 33% increase in revenue. The revenue growth has been put down to the increasing popularity of Facebook-owned apps, such as Instagram.
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"Our community and business continue to grow quickly, and now more than 2 billion people use at least one of our services every day," Zuckerberg said in a statement released with the earnings. "We're building the best services for private messaging and stories, and there are huge opportunities ahead in video and commerce as well."
The faltering number of users in developed countries reflects a loss of trust in the company following year of controversy. A trend that has been particularly evident following to the Cambridge Analytica scandal which broke in March 2018 when it was revealed that the personal data of 50 million Facebook profiles were harvested unbeknownst to the individuals in question.