Of Facebook’s 845 million monthly active users, 425 million accessed Facebook in December alone through a smart-or feature phone app or through its mobile-optimized website. In 2011, 85 percent of Facebook’s $3.7 billion in revenues came from advertising, but none of it from its mobile platforms, notes Kevin Fitchard.
As the S-1 says:
We do not currently directly generate any meaningful revenue from the use of Facebook mobile products, and our ability to do so successfully is unproven. Accordingly, if users continue to increasingly access Facebook mobile products as a substitute for access through personal computers, and if we are unable to successfully implement monetization strategies for our mobile users, our revenue and financial results may be negatively affected.
Of course Facebook’s problem has an easy fix: it can simply start putting ads in its mobile apps and website, notes Fitchard.
In its S-1 Facebook also mentioned the possibility of inserting “sponsored stories” in its members news feeds.
There are 700 million to 800 million potential Indian customers for Facebook. Facebook’s estimates of its penetration in India, is estimated between 20 to 30 percent. India is the world’s second largest market, but very few of its 1 billion-plus people have PCs or the means to access one.
Clearly Facebook’s mobile strategy is going to have a huge impact, whichever way it rolls.