While celebrating New Year’s Eve mostly in their own houses, people across the world decided to leverage technology and connect with their near and dear ones.
The New Year’s Eve in 2020 set new records for WhatsApp.
While celebrating New Year’s Eve mostly in their own houses, people across the world decided to leverage technology and connect with their near and dear ones. As partying in groups outdoors remained a cause of concern on the back of the Coronavirus pandemic, many people wished others online through voice or video calls. As a result, a surge was witnessed in the number of calls made via social media platforms and WhatsApp turned out to be one of the most used among Facebook applications. As many as 1.4 billion voice and video calls were made on WhatsApp across countries in one day, that is New Year’s Eve.
“In 2020, people turned to technology to stay in touch and get things done in the face of social distancing and stay-at-home mandates, and video calling became arguably the most in-demand feature,” Facebook said in its blog. The company added that while New Year’s is usually the busiest night for this company, the New Year’s Eve in 2020 set new records for WhatsApp. When compared to New Year’s Eve in 2019, an increase of 50 per cent has been recorded in WhatsApp calling during 2020. To be sure, December 31, 2020 marks the day for WhatsApp to have the highest ever calling in a single day.
Apart from WhatsApp, other Facebook-owned apps like Instagram and Messenger also saw an increase in engagement. According to the company, New Year’s Eve 2020 also marked the biggest day for Messenger group video calls where calls with more than 3 people in a group were made in the United States. This is twice the number of group video calls made when compared to the ones made on any average day. More than 55 million live broadcasts were done across Instagram and Facebook platforms globally on the last day of 2020.
“This year, New Year’s Eve looked a lot different, and we had engineering teams across Facebook’s apps, ready to support any issue, so the world could ring in 2021,” said Caitlin Banford, technical program manager at Facebook.