Meta is to launch new subscription services as users can get “verified” by getting the blue mark. Facebook and Instagram users will get access to better security features as they can get verified with government issued electronic ID and more visibility in search in addition to access to a service centre. Meta will charge $11.99 for desktop and $14.99 for mobile subscriptions. Initial launch markets for this subscription model are New Zealand and Australia.
“Zuckerberg is using a tactic from Musk´s playbook, as Twitter recently launched a similar badge and subscription model in an aggressive attempt to monetize his platform. In fact, Snapchat has also produced a similar play to the marketplace. However, is this really about added security and services for users, or is it Meta´s response to data privacy trends becoming more stringent, therefore affecting ad revenue?” says Hreggviður Magnússon, Managing Director of The Engine.
Meta has had copying in its DNA, and we saw the rollout of Instagram´s Reels as a copy/paste to what competition was doing, and the list is bigger than that. Perhaps innovation is lacking and the company is struggling to find revenue growth while building the Metaverse. Meta has never charged its end-users anything, but capitalised on their user behaviour data. “Recently we saw Apple´s rollout of strict data privacy protocols known as the App Tracking Transparency on iOS and with this rollout, in addition to GDPR and further regulatory structures, Meta´s ability to capitalise on user data has diminished. In fact, Zuckerberg reported that Meta lost about $10 billion in ad revenue, due to the Apple rollout” says Hreggviður a recent interview with Iceland´s local Business Paper Viðskiptablaðið.
“This changed vision from the Zuck-house is perhaps a signal of the development of increased data and privacy protection while developing new revenue streams, directly from end-consumers of Facebook. Meta´s revenue has slowed in recent months, where we have seen a 55% year-on-year decline in net income in Q4 2022” says Hreggviður.