Facebook has added at least five million more users – teens specifically – after acquiring the anonymous compliment app, tbh – short for “to be honest.”
Tbh was launched in September and has become a hit among middle school and high school teens.
Created by Midnight Labs LLC, the app is available only on the Apple App Store for iOS gadgets and currently has five million users.
It has been touted by its creator as “the only anonymous app with positive vibes” and had been featured on BuzzFeed & Fortune Magazine.
The app allows users to give compliments by participating in anonymous “quizzes.”, Mashable reported.
(Read also: The New Anonymous App That’s Gone Viral Among Teens)
The app has been on top ten of the Apple App Store for weeks now.
Sensor Tower’s data showed that tbh is the number one app for two consecutive weeks.
Since its launching, there were two million downloads of the app in its first month in the App Store, App Annie’s data showed.
Since then, tbh said the app had reached five million users “who have collectively exchanged more than a billion messages.”
Facebook said, “tbh and Facebook share a common goal – of building community and enabling people to share in ways that bring us closer together.”
The world’s most extensive social media network, however, plans to make tbh a standalone app.
In a blog post, tbh said, “Going forward, your experience on tbh won’t change, and we’ll continue to build the features you love—now with plenty more resources.”
“When we met Facebook, we realized that we shared many of the same core values about connecting people through positive interactions.”
How tbh works
Tbh revolves around emoji-filled anonymous “quizzes” that ask users to pick his or her friend who has “the best smile,” “admirable perseverance” or the “best party planner.”
A user’s identity is kept secret. However, users can see the gender and school level of the person who “chooses” them.
With the app, its creator “wanted to create a community that made us feel happier and more confident about ourselves.”
“We felt that people craved genuine and positive interactions in their online experiences.”
The blog post also said tbh has “helped people recover from depression and form better relationships with friends” as a result of the positive interactions.
When tbh was launched, its co-creator Nikita Bier told TechCrunch, “If we’re improving the mental health of millions of teens, that’s success to us.”
The financial terms of the Facebook’s acquisition of tbh were not divulged, but TechCrunch’s source revealed that the payment was “less than $100 million”.
The purchase also won’t require regulatory approval.
As part of the acquisition deal, TechCrunch said Bier and tbh co-creators Erik Hazzard, Kyle Zaragoza and Nicolas Ducdodon would hold office at Facebook’s Menlo Park headquarters.
The four tbh creators will continue to grow the app and work with the social network’s cash, engineering, anti-spam, moderation and localization resources.
The acquisition of tbh is not surprising, according to Mashable, pointing out Facebook’s struggle to be appealing to teenagers.
Mashable said Facebook’s standalone apps made for teens (Lifestage and Slingshot – reportedly a clone of Snapchat – have failed, so the acquisition of tbh is a big win for Facebook.
Do you see any benefits from Facebook’s acquisition of tbh? Will Facebook finally achieve its dream of capturing the teen market? Share your thoughts.