Facebook outage: Telegram gained 70 million new users when WhatsApp was down

Telegram's daily growth saw an unprecedented spike during the Facebook outage.

Highlights
  • Telegram gained over 70 million new users during the Facebook, Instagram, and WhatsApp outage
  • The Facebook outage lasted over 6 hours and was caused by an internal mistake
  • Most new users joined the messaging service from the Americas

Facebook and its other services such as WhatsApp and Instagram were recently down for users across the globe. The outage lasted for more than 6 hours and caused millions of dollars in damage to Facebook. However, the grass was greener for WhatsApp competitor Telegram, who gained millions of new followers during the outage. The messaging service registered a massive spike in new registrations during the outage as a lot of users moved from WhatsApp to Telegram. The platform gained more than 70 million new users during Facebook’s down time.

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Telegram gains when Facebook loses

According to an official post by Facebook, the outage that caused its services to go down was caused by a faulty configuration change internally. Facebook, WhatsApp, and Instagram were down across the world for more than 3.5 billion users. These services were down for almost 6 hours, the longest outage in the history of Facebook. The social networking site lost around USD 545,000 every hour in ad revenue, according to Standard Media Index, an ad measurement firm. Facebook’s stock valuation fell by around 4.9 percent, and Mark Zuckerberg lost 6 billion USD in real-time valuation. 

However, when Facebook was losing money and users, rival Telegram was seeing a massive spike in new users. According to founder Pavel Durov, the messaging client saw more than 70 million registrations during the 6 hour WhatsApp outage. He wrote in a blog post that the folks at Telegram did an exceptional job at handling the new traffic, and no one experience any issues. However, users in the Americas may have faced slower speeds as most new users were signing up from those countries. 

This outage shows what can happen when a single company owns multiple important platforms. Other than causing ad revenue loss for Facebook, the outage also resulted in disruption in the trading of assets.