Allardyce to demand more from Sunderland

26 Oct 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

The Inside Story of Surface Book, Microsoft’s Next Big Thing.

When Facebook shelled out a stunning $19 billion for WhatsApp in February of last year, few here in the US had heard of the tiny Silicon Valley startup.”I sang with her onstage a few years ago when she came through Nashville, but we’ve been missing each other all year,” McGraw said. “We want to see her show—I want to see her show, my wife wants to see her show. One simple messaging app could provide voice calling, video calling, instant payments, and more. “It’s an amazingly powerful communication tool, distributed to populations that frankly have been reamed for years by SMS charges, and it has changed all that,” David Soloff, who used WhatsApp to help bootstrap his company, Premise, told us shortly after Facebook acquisition was approved last fall. “This is a profound thing.” Now, a year after regulators approved the Facebook deal, WhatsApp is used by more than 900 million souls, which places it among the most popular apps on earth. In the one story they participated in—a profile in Forbes that appeared the day of the Facebook acquisition—company co-founder Jan Koum was unapologetic in saying he considers PR and press a drag on the company’s time. “Marketing and press kicks up dust,” said the Ukraine-born Koum, who founded the company alongside an old Yahoo colleague named Brian Acton. “It gets in your eye, and then you’re not focusing on the product.” But in the wake of the company’s one-year anniversary with Facebook, Acton agreed to answer some questions, though only by email.

Facebook can reach all those overseas WhatsApp users it can’t reach with Messenger, and WhatsApp can plug into the vast technical infrastructure Facebook has built to serve its online empire. We felt from the very beginning that our product should be one that anyone could use no matter where they were in the world, and incorporating localized text was an obvious approach to that strategy. WIRED: You tackled the international market in part by inking deals with international wireless carriers, convincing them to bundle your app with phones as an alternative to classic SMS texting.

Brian Acton: In general, we work with wireless carriers that understand that the mobile data services they provide are the future and who want to create more data usage—and customers!—within their network. Constructing our deals such that they are win/win/win—for our users, the carriers, and WhatsApp—has been the best way to pitch and win these relationships. These deals have been a strong component toward our overall strategy, but so has focusing on app simplicity and performance as well as service reliability.

We employ an engineer’s mindset and try to keep our service operating costs as low as possible (low server count, high quality hardware, minimal impact to staff productivity). WIRED: You build the operation with the FreeBSD operating system and the Erlang programming language, two tools that aren’t that commonly used in the Silicon Valley tech world.

Our original chat servers were built on Erlang, and we were able to leverage Erlang language features and evolve our service while at the same time maintaining very good uptime. I’ve had the very good fortune to work with the best in the industry, and I value each and every engineers’ contribution to what we have accomplished. We hope to create an environment in our office where people can spend the vast majority of their time writing code, fixing bugs, and building a better product.

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