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Facebook to Focus on Mobile, Zuckerberg Says

In a rare no-holds-barred interview at the Tech Crunch Disrupt SF Conference, Mark Zuckerberg divulges info about the social media company’s product strategy and why it's focusing on mobile users.

The twitterati chirped restlessly, while waiting for to take the stage at the Tech Crunch Disrupt SF Conference.

“Getting brutal here at #TCDisrupt, waiting for Zuckerberg/ @arrington chat,” tweeted skwulf, “Kinda like the Serengeti; leonine nerds roaring on chairs.”

Others commented on the heavy-duty security that had just moved in to make sure the Facebook CEO was protected from unknown threats.

“Aisles of #TCDisrupt clogged with bloggrz, MikeIsaac tweeted.  “This is now a fire hazard.”

More than 15,000 people tuned into Tech Crunch’s live stream of the Disrupt SF conference Tuesday afternoon, in addition to the thousands of people who attended the event in person. The video showcased a conversation between Michael Arrington, blogger at large, and . 

“Of note: Nearly a year since Zuckerberg has done a sit-down, free-for-all interview. Last, if memory serves, was Charlie Rose in November,” tweeted @MikeIsaac, who is a senior editor at All Things D.

The CEO of the social media company, which is headquartered in Menlo Park, touched on a variety of issues. Arrington asked him a number of questions. After answering each one, Zuckerberg brought the conversation back to mobile products and the reasons that the company would be focusing on developing this vertical.

“We have more usage on our mobile website than we have on our mobile IOS and Android apps together,” Zuckerberg said. “Mobile web is huge.” 

The company has about 950 million users worldwide, according to Zuckerberg. He said more people spend more time using Facebook with their mobile devices than from a desktop, so the company is going to prioritize that. One of the reasons is that mobile users are more engaged on the site than people who login from a desktop computer, he said.

Arrington asked about the IPO, the stock price, and employee retention.  Zuckerberg addressed each question with the rapid staccato speech of someone who has discussed this topic a number of times, yet wants to please the person in front of them. 

“The performance of the stock has obviously been disappointing,” Zuckerberg said, noting that the company would continue its mission of making the world “more open and connected.”  While it may not please everyone, he said Facebook would be building things that are going to "build value over the long term."

The Facebook CEO said the team will focus on building infrastructure that can be integrated with as many different devices as possible. He said that based on statistics, and his own intuition, it is a good idea.

“I basically live on my mobile device,” he said.  “The founders letter in the S1… I wrote that on my mobile phone,” he quipped.  

He said that people have their devices when they want to do things, so the energy in the ecosystem is going to go toward building mobile experiences.

Watch the live video here.

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vocal-de-local September 12, 2012 at 05:49 PM
Dunno. Seems people are just a bit too addicted to mobile communication. A day will come, oh wait it's already here, when we will be afraid to be alone with ourselves! It's to the point where it owns us and not the other way around.
Louisa Hufstader (Editor) September 12, 2012 at 06:22 PM
Indeed, and some corporations discovered "mobile" long before electronics caught up: We've been wearing their logos on our sneakered feet, jeaned posteriors, T-shirted torsos and ball-capped heads for generations now. At least the mobile devices give us as individuals a fighting chance to express ourselves in return: That's why I am looking forward with great anticipation to the Patch mobile upgrade coming in a few months with many more options for users.
Ash Leigh September 12, 2012 at 06:42 PM
It's not just addition to mobile communication, it's the internet. You have to just about cut the power off to get kids to play outside now-a-days. Have you seen the Disney movie, Wall-E? A world of obese people, caught in a digital/electronic world.
Josh Garagos September 12, 2012 at 07:28 PM
I didn't know anyone even used Facebook anymore? Most people I know got rid of their Facebooks, Facebooks days of being cool are long gone, sorry Mark, you can focus on mobile all you want but your site is slowly dieing and will be obselete in a few years
Louisa Hufstader (Editor) September 12, 2012 at 08:18 PM
I use it, Josh! Yesterday I posted a link to a Napa Patch article on the National Corvette Museum Facebook page, and today they responded with a request to reprint the article in their magazine. Very flattering.
Josh Garagos September 12, 2012 at 08:32 PM
To louisa, I know its still in use, my point is that more people are leaving the site instead of joining. More people I know are cancelling their accounts or rarely use it anymore. People have moved on, their security features let a lot of people down, and the debacle with their IPO has driven more people away. Myspace died quickly, facebook will die just much more slowly, people are more unhappy with the site than ever before and the alternatives like twitter and pintrest are taking away customers daily
Ash Leigh September 12, 2012 at 09:57 PM
Josh, every single person I came across that said they were leaving Facebook, always came back. There are just too many people on FB, that you can only really keep contact with on that site. Email addresses get changed just as much as cell phone numbers. The network site's newsfeed is the best way to see a photo of the newest baby and latest local news. Yes, there are more network sites out there today. Heck, LadyGaga also launched her own. I doubt it will completely die soon. I never caught onto Twitter, but I sure do like Pinterest. They are not the same though.
vocal-de-local September 13, 2012 at 02:47 AM
Facebook was a total waste of my time. I quit six months ago. I would never return except I need to log on to upload stuff to Fandalism every once in awhile. Seems that far to many of my FB friends were preoccupied with petty things such as "I'm yawning now" or "today I ate a bowl of vanilla ice cream". It's like, give me a frickin break! Maybe the age span of my FB friends was too broad lol!
Ash Leigh September 13, 2012 at 04:22 AM
True. Some people needed a diary to write in. Twitter is in that same boat.
vocal-de-local September 13, 2012 at 05:20 AM
I prefer interacting on news media blogs. It feels more purposeful. FB generally doesn't have much of a focus by comparison. My guess is that, eventually, people will tire of social media sites unless they becomes more focus oriented beyond games and petty chit chat.
Ash Leigh September 13, 2012 at 04:45 PM
My friends and family live around the world, literally (Guam, Philippines, England, Hawaii, Africa, Japan to just name a few) . When I'm waking up, they are going to bed. It's so easy to miss a two hour window to call in a time zone because of work, or you just simply forget. FB is our way of sharing photos, our kids accomplishments and great news. I don’t play games, rarely anyone I know does. Yes, some people post the petty statuses - but you tease them enough, they will get the idea and eventually stop. Then the newbie comes along, and it starts up again.  It’s not just for everyone. I still know people that refuse to have an email address or credit cards.
vocal-de-local September 13, 2012 at 05:58 PM
LOL Esiuol! It was all my relatives, those I wasn't particularly interested in hanging out with, who were increasing the complexity of my FB experience. Some of these people were whining all the time. Such drama. It's like, when I attend a family reunion, I listen to the drama (the level of drama depends on whether it's my maternal line or not!) and then....I get to go home. On FB, it's like every single day is a family reunion. Once I disabled my account, it was amazing how much happier and healthier I felt. I'm one of those types of people who is like a sponge that absorbs everyone's problems. I can take some of it but wow, not every single day. And people tend to emotionally let loose on FB. I'm not a big fan of complexity!

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