SOCIAL NETWORK Facebook posted its financial results for the fourth quarter of 2012 today, reporting revenues of $1.58bn, an increase of 40 percent from the same quarter in 2011.
Facebook's fourth quarter results reflected a shift to increased focus on mobile, with revenues from mobile advertising accounting for 23 percent of total advertising revenues, up from 14 percent in the previous quarter.
Facebook said sponsored stories in mobile news feed and app install ads accounted for the significant growth in mobile advertising revenues.
Monthly active users on mobile also increased by 57 percent year on year to 680 million. Total monthly active users on the social network increased by 25 percent to 1.06 billion.
"In 2012, we connected over a billion people and became a mobile company," said Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg. "We enter 2013 with good momentum and will continue to invest to achieve our mission and become a stronger, more valuable company."
On a much less positive note, Facebook profits fell off a cliff compared to last year. The firm reported that its GAAP net income for the fourth quarter of 2012 was $64m, down precipitously from $302m in the fourth quarter of 2011, a plunge of nearly 79 percent.
However, Ovum analyst Eden Zoller said the social network's financial results still justify optimism.
"Facebook 2012 quarter four results suggest the company is on the right track following its disappointing IPO and the lacklustre two quarters that immediately followed," Zoller said.
"The mobile advertising front should be applauded as a key challenge for Facebook has been how to monetise its growing mobile user base, particularly as an increasing number interact with the platform by only via mobile devices." µ
Or so says the rumour mill ...
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