Facebook's investments in mobile are paying off. The world's largest social network reported $642 million in profit in the quarter ending March 31—a 193% increase from the same period last year. With $2.5 billion of revenue, the company's top line jumped 72% year-over-year.
"Our goal is to make our ads as interesting and relevant to organic content you find on Facebook," CEO Mark Zuckerberg said in a call with investors.
Higher rates charged for news feed ads, which see more user engagement compared with display ads on the right rail, helped propel advertising revenue, which totaled $2.27 billion—an 82% rise from the year-earlier period. "That's our strongest year-over-year advertising growth rate in nearly three years," said chief operating officer Sheryl Sandberg. "We continue to believe this is because Facebook has the best mobile ad product in the market."
Mobile has been a strong driver of revenue, with ads making up 59% of total advertising revenue, up from 30% in the first quarter last year. Facebook also said Instagram, which it acquired to ramp up its mobile presence, has 200 million monthly users, up from 22 million two years ago.
Overall, the company said it has 1.28 billion monthly active users as of March, and of that, 1.01 billion users accessed the social network from their mobile devices, a 34% increase from the same quarter last year. Of its 802 million daily active users, three-quarters, or 609 million, are on mobile.
The social network also announced chief operating officer David Ebersman will step down after five years. He will be succeeded by David Wehner, who currently serves as Facebook's vice president of corporate finance and business planning.