Live Messenger integrated Facebook chat last year using the "Connect" model where you connect your Facebook account to Messenger (just once) and all your friends are available on Messenger. This is unlike the "Federation" approach which meant that if you changed your app/client you would have to add all tour friends once again. The "Connect" approach for IM, is resulting in 100 times the per-user engagement, and nearly 7 times the total traffic from a fraction as many users.
And while we're excited about that continued overall momentum, we also wanted to share how these numbers compare with the "federation" approach that we've previously tried, and that some services are still more focused on today. Even after 5 years of having federation with Yahoo, and even though for most of that time both Yahoo! and Messenger global IM traffic has dwarfed total Facebook Chat traffic, when we look at a typical day like July 31, 2011, here's what we see:
- Facebook—164 million IMs from 3 million users, or 55 IMs/user. That's 3 million users (of our 35 million users who are actively using Facebook-connected features with us each month) signing into Facebook Chat from Messenger that day, which connects them to their ~130 Facebook friends automatically, and actively having about 10 IM conversations, each of which contains about 5-6 messages.
- Yahoo!—24 million IMs from 48 million users, or 0.5 IMs/user. That's 48 million users who have invited and added at least one Yahoo! friend to their Messenger friends list, and have signed into Messenger and had a conversation that day. The average number of Yahoo! friends people have added is only 3.2 (not surprising since they have to re-invite them one by one), and the total engagement follows suit.