At just two years old, Friend.ly has entered the whale’s mouth that is a Facebook acquirement. It seems like a fitting cap for a very eventful sophomore showing — this was the year, after all, that the startup experienced a robust growth spurt in user numbers, clinched $5 million in venture funds, and scored a magnate-ish deal with the Palo Alto/Menlo Park young folk.
The media has already gotten in a few jabs, pointing out that calculations from AppData suggest that although the number of registered users has grown — there are currently 25 million of them — the number of active users has seen a phenomenal decline: 6.9 million earlier in the year and only a measly 300,000 today.
In Friend.ly-speak, Why the drop? Perhaps it’s growth cycle is normalizing; the first jump in numbers was a prompted by successful infrastructural changes designed to improve the sharing rate of Friend.ly content on Facebook.
Friend.ly is supposed to strengthen bonds with old friends and spark new acquaintanceships through online posing and answering of questions, some with a good heaping of mawkishness. Recent questions featured on the Friend.ly blog included “What made you smile today?” and “When was the last time you walked barefoot through the grass?”
Concerning the big news, Team Friend.ly issued a statement thanking users and investors “from the bottom of [their] hearts,” while Facebook praised its new addition for the “really compelling way” it created “for people to express themselves and meet others through answering questions.”