Pretty much everyone I know uses WhatsApp. It’s free, it’s private, it’s easy to use and it just works. Facebook has some big changes planned and honestly, the writing was always on the wall. It costs nothing to use it and half the world uses it.
In an attempt to keep WhatsApp as a free service, Facebook will be bringing ads to the service - and there's a rumour that it will bypass the app’s end-to-end encryption to more effectively target those ads.
Facebook bought WhatsApp a few years ago and hasn’t done a whole lot with it since. But a free service that loads of people use is a massive untapped revenue source – there is no way around that. The old annual subscription for a tiny amount was removed, and we’ve all been merrily using it ever since.
We will start seeing these ads in the status feature of the app in 2019.