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Will Facebook Inc (FB) become the, Inc. (AMZN) of Big Data?

One of the new areas of Big Data development that Facebook should command is in trend analysis for social media interactions.  About this, an article in USA Today reports that, “Facebook is heavily invested in this science for reasons of economic survival.  The company reports your likes to marketers eager to in turn serve you up offerings you’re supposed to crave.”

From the Big Data efforts of Facebook, advertising and marketing efforts will be much more efficient for clients.  That will make the results of Graph Search even more valuable.  As an example of this, Comcast Corporation (NASDAQ:CMCSA) found that addressable advertising over the television to narrowly defined groups such as renters was 56% more efficient and 38% more effective than mass advertising.

For this type of Big Data deployment utilizing social media, according to the UK market research firm Trendstream’s Global Web Index (GWI), the top five for active users in December 2012 were:

  1. Facebook
  2. Google+
  3. Youtube
  4. Twitter
  5. Qzone
While Facebook is #1, Google is in a strong position at #2, and #3 with its ownership of YouTube (bought in 2006).  Even though Microsoft and Apple are not in the top 5, each brings considerable firepower of its own onto the Big Data battlefield.
With its Internet Explorer Web browser, Bing search engine, and other resources, Microsoft has years of data collection that could be peerless.  The Bing search engine continues to upgrade the Big Data potential of Microsoft.
Apple has been building up its Big Data position through the buying of smaller firms.  As an example, Apple bought a number of proprietary mapping firms to develop its app for this service.  The plethora of apps that Apple offers huge amounts of data collection for Big Data utilization.  Even with these efforts, Apple is still far behind Microsoft and Google in developing a Big Data presence.
But Facebook is in a potentially commanding position which should only increase.  Its membership continues to expand, as does its usage.  As of December, more active users were accessing Facebook with mobile devices than other Web browsers.
From that and other factors, Facebook should be able to ascend to a role of primacy in Big Data as has Amazon in the cloud.  While Facebook shares are still well below the 52-week peak of $45.00, there has been a surge of more than 40% in the price level for the last quarter of market action.  If Facebook capitalizes on its unique position in the Big Data sector, Foolish investors could be looking at even more gains ahead in the stock price of the social media giant.

The article Will Facebook become the Amazon of Big Data? originally appeared on and is written by Jonathan Yates.

Copyright © 1995 – 2013 The Motley Fool, LLC. All rights reserved. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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