WhatsApp edges a step closer to 1 billion users

900 million, check - now can it catch up to Facebook?

WhatsApp has come on leaps and bounds since it was bought out by Facebook, and now it's finally climbed its way to 900 million users.

The WhatsApp team certainly have reason to celebrate. The messaging app just hit 900 million monthly active users and, as always with these things, took to Facebook to announce the good news. The milestone was reached seven months after WhatsApp hit the 700 million mark.

WhatsApp has seen a massive surge of late. It's reportedly racked up tens of millions of users in just a matter of weeks and now has its sights set on 1 billion. The way it's going, that shouldn't take long. In June, WhatsApp became only the second Android app to reach 1 billion downloads, and it looks like there's still more to come.

It's gone from strength to strength ever since it was acquired by Facebook for a steep $19bn in 2014. Mark Zuckerberg threw down big money, but it's paying dividends. In comparison, Facebook's own Messenger app hit 700 million users in June following its separation from the core service.

The one to beat, though, is Facebook's main mobile app which boasts a whopping 1.49 billion monthly active users. Whether or not WhatsApp can catch up with it remains to be seen, but we wouldn't rule it out. One thing we do know is that a business model isn't far away.

Zuckerberg previously said: “Once we get to being a service with 1 billion, there are many clear ways that we can monetise.” The question is, how? The Facebook founder has already ruled out ads, so it'll be interesting to see what it does.