WhatsApp benefits from Facebook deal announcement

If WhatsApp wasn’t growing fast enough already, the messaging app is enjoying a fresh wave of adoption following announcement of its blockbuster $19 billion acquisition by Facebook.

The spike in downloads is especially pronounced in the U.S. App Store, where WhatsApp has jumped from No. 37 in the overall ranking of free iPhone apps on Tuesday — the day before the Facebook announcement — to No. 4 as of Friday.

It has also gone from No. 4 to No. 1 among communication apps, according to data compiled by app analytics firm App Annie. Most of WhatsApp’s 450 million monthly users globally have come from outside the U.S., with a strong presence in Europe, the Middle East, South America and India. Part of the reason Facebook bought WhatsApp was to gain a stronger foothold in emerging markets, where it wants to grow.

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