Facebook has come a long way since its humble beginnings as a small, college-based networking site back in 2004. Now it boasts almost 2 billion monthly active users, and is crowned the most widely used social media site in the world. But what does the future hold for the social media giant?

Expect more from Instagram

A recent study suggested that Facebook video user engagement was dropping. So what’s Facebook’s solution? Pipe more attention their image-sharing platform Instagram, which grabs 92% of social media attention for brands. That’s a huge incentive for companies to either begin using Instagram for business or perfect their strategy.

In fact, it’s not just Instagram that will grow. WhatsApp, Messenger and Groups – all in the hundreds of millions of users – will see improvements, streamlining and technological make-overs.

Since you’re here, why not check out our top tips on using Instagram to enhance your online presence?

Changing algorithms to combat ‘fake news’

The 2016 Presidential Election showed the world how fast news travels – and how quickly misinformation spreads too. Now, a non-personalised ‘Trending’ section shows real-world news instead of feed-dedicated topics. It prioritises one story or event reported on hundreds of times over one story shared hundreds of times.

It’s the first step in an effort to get Facebook’s users out of their ‘bubble’, and could be a great leap towards a more ‘neutral’ Facebook.

Virtual Reality is the new reality

Facebook looks towards a future where everyone connected. So it’s no surprise that “Social VR” is pipped to become a defining element in the next stage of social media. Using Oculus Rift and 360° cameras will offer a virtual reality that we’ve never seen before.  Zuckerberg wants to take this mind-blowing 3D functionality beyond games and make it fit-for-purpose with content-sharing.

Of course, this’ll depend on some hardware changes on the market – like the Oculus Rift headset, and a shift in the way users interact with Facebook on their mobile devices.

Artificial Intelligence will grow

Yes, AI is due to become a big part of Facebook’s future. They’re currently heavily investing in Artificial Intelligence to bring users a super-personalised news feed. Because when scrolling through your feed, you only see perhaps 20 stories of thousands that Facebook could’ve offered you. This is being addressed pretty quickly. How quickly? Well…

6 million predictions a second.

That’s how Facebook’s AI is servicing the content that you want to see. It reads posts and matches it to what it thinks you’re interested in. And this is set to become quicker and more effective the more it is refined by the brains at Facebook HQ – and not just because Mark Zuckerberg literally has an AI that makes him toast.

Businesses will benefit from this too as their adverts will become more personalised to users as algorithms are further refined and tested.

What’s next?

We don’t know what giant leap forward Facebook will take next. If you think your Facebook business page or display ads could use a revamp, contact the Digivita team today – we’re more than happy to help.