Things that are cheaper than WhatsApp (… because there are a lot)

February 21, 2014

“Things that are cheaper than WhatsApp” is a single-purpose Tumblr with an apparently endless supply of material from which to draw. Facebook bought the mobile-messaging start-up on Wednesday for $16 billion — an eye-popping amount that could, it turns out, buy 64,000 trips to space, 10 Burj Khalifas … or 64 Washington Posts. Womp womp.

The Tumblr is good for a bit of context and a few laughs. (It’s worth noting that many of the graphics list Wikipedia as their source — so take them with a grain of salt. We fact-checked several that were guilty of some creative rounding; 2012 world music sales, for instance, actually totaled $16.5 billion, per a leading industry group.) But experts say WhatsApp’s valuation actually makes sense — 450 million people use WhatsApp each month, and they use it rabidly.

The app has also shown it can actually make money; after the first year, which is free, users pay 99 cents annually to keep using WhatsApp.

Still — the London Olympics. A year (almost) of NASA research! We could play this game all year (…and hope the Tumblr will). You can submit your own ideas here.

Caitlin Dewey runs The Intersect blog, writing about digital and Internet culture. Before joining the Post, she was an associate online editor at Kiplinger’s Personal Finance.
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