Facebook investors concern about drop in usage of the social network in the fourth quarter despite CEO Mark Zuckerberg tried to reassure.
Facebook’s daily active user base in the U.S. and Canada fell for the first time ever in the fourth quarter, dropping to 184 million from 185 million in the previous quarter.
It is revealed that usage of its service declined by an average of 50 million hours a day which is a 5% drop, Zuckerberg noted on a call with investors and analysts, linking it to recent changes the company made to what it shows users in their news feed.
Each user accounted for $26.76 worth of revenue for the company last quarter, and it went up by 35 percent over the same quarter last year.
It’s not clear why that segment got smaller. But it has been a tough year for Facebook in the U.S., and most of the company has been grappling with the fact that Facebook’s service was used by Russian actors to try and sway the 2016 presidential election. Perhaps U.S users are grappling with that, too.
Overall, Facebook’s daily active user audience was up 32 million people in Q4. But it was the smallest quarter-over-quarter increase in two years.
The company is focusing on promoting meaningful interactions with users, not on the gross amount of time they spend with its service, he explained.
“By focusing on meaningful interaction, I expect the time we all spend on Facebook will be more valuable,” Zuckerberg said on the call. “I always believe that if we do the right thing, and deliver deeper value, our community and our business will be stronger over the long term.”
But investors doesn’t seem happy with it. After falling more than 4% in after-hours trading immediately following the release of the company’s earnings announcement, Facebook’s shares rebounded during the call. After it was over, the stock was up 1%.