Oct 30, 2018

Amid "Stories" push, Facebook CEO warns of growth slowdown

Facebook mobile app icon. Photo: Thomas Trutschel/Photothek via Getty Images

As Facebook changes its apps so that feeds share the spotlight with "stories," its "revenue growth may be slower in that period just as it was when we transitioned to mobile,” CEO Mark Zuckerberg cautioned investors Tuesday on a call to discuss the company's 2018 Q3 earnings.

The bottom line: Although Facebook needs to appease Wall Street as it comes off a string of controversies and navigates new changes to its products, its CEO was blunt about the challenges posed by this trend.

Stories: "I just think it's the future," Zuckerberg said of the format, first pioneered by rival Snapchat, consisting of collections of photos and videos that vanish after a short period of time.

  • However, adding the stories format to the flagship Facebook app hasn't gone as smoothly as bringing it to other apps Facebook owns, like Instagram and WhatsApp. In part, that's because stories rolled out on Facebook later, and the feature wasn't as high in quality as on the other apps, he said.
  • Earning revenue from stories by placing ads on them is still in progress, he added.
  • Zuckerberg predicts that people will share more on stories than they will in feeds, as they come to prefer sharing content they know won't be online forever.

Video: The company will continue to invest in the growth of video on its services.

  • That's despite Zuckerberg's acknowledgement that video is less lucrative for the company than other forms of user interaction.
  • And as video grows, it will displace other types of usage that would generate more revenue for Facebook.

Instagram: 20% of user time spent on Instagram is on the Explore tab, which contains suggested content tailored to each user.

  • Zuckerberg notes that Facebook hasn't monetized that section yet, tacitly implying we should expect to see ads appear there eventually.

Security: The upcoming midterms elections will be Facebook's biggest test, said Zuckerberg.

  • The company has greatly improved its security systems, though it's still a year behind where it would like to be, he added.
  • It plans to continue making significant investments in that area next year as it's "up against sophisticated adversaries that will continue to evolve," said Zuckerberg.

Go deeper: Facebook is beating Snapchat on its own invention — stories

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Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 2 a.m. ET: 859,796 — Total deaths: 42,332 — Total recoveries: 178,300.
  2. U.S.: Leads the world in confirmed cases. Total confirmed cases as of 2 a.m. ET: 189,618 — Total deaths: 4,079 — Total recoveries: 7,109.
  3. Business updates: Should you pay your rent or mortgage during the coronavirus pandemic? Find out if you are protected under the CARES Act.
  4. Public health updates: More than 400 long-term care facilities across the U.S. report patients with coronavirus — Older adults and people with underlying health conditions are more at risk, new data shows.
  5. Federal government latest: President Trump said the next two weeks would be "very painful," with projections indicating the virus could kill 100,000–240,000 Americans.
  6. Coronavirus in custody: Inmates in all U.S. federal prisons are set to enter a 14-day quarantine on April 1. A federal judge on Tuesday ordered U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement to release 10 detained immigrants who are at risk of contracting COVID-19 while in confinement.
  7. U.S.S. Theodore Roosevelt: Captain of nuclear aircraft carrier docked in Guam pleaded with the U.S. Navy for more resources after more than 100 members of his crew tested positive.
  8. What should I do? Answers about the virus from Axios expertsWhat to know about social distancingQ&A: Minimizing your coronavirus risk.
  9. Other resources: CDC on how to avoid the virus, what to do if you get it.

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NYC races to build field hospitals as coronavirus death toll tops 1,000

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio announces at the USTA Bille Jean King tennis center that the venue will be transformed into a 350-bed temporary hospital. Photo: Bryan R. Smith/AFP via Getty Images

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio told a news conference Tuesday of plans to triple hospital bed numbers to combat the novel coronavirus by transforming facilities into makeshift hospitals — including U.S. Open tennis courts.

The big picture: The city now accounts for a quarter of all COVID-19 deaths in the U.S. — more than 1,000 as of Wednesday morning. De Blasio said the city had "about 20,000 working hospital beds in our major hospitals" before the outbreak. "We now need to, in just the next weeks ... produce three times that number," he said.

Go deeperArrow26 mins ago - Health

U.S. coronavirus updates: Death toll tops 4,000

Data: The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins; Map: Andrew Witherspoon/Axios

The novel coronavirus has now killed more than 4,000 people in the U.S. — with over 1,000 deaths reported in New York City alone, per Johns Hopkins data. The number of deaths are still much lower than those reported in Italy, Spain and China.

Of note: Hours earlier, President Trump noted it's "going to be a very painful two weeks," with projections indicating the novel coronavirus could kill 100,000–240,000 Americans — even with strict social distancing guidelines in place. "They are going to be facing a war zone," he said of medical workers.

Go deeperArrowUpdated 2 hours ago - Health