WhatsApp is the largest messaging service in the world with 1.5 billion monthly users.
At some point, things had to come to a screeching halt.
Conflicts soon arose over how WhatsApp would make money. Facebook has scrapped its 99 cents annual charge it used to dish out to all of its customers.
Share your thoughts on Jan leaving the company. "Jan: I will miss working so closely with you".
In a blog post written when Facebook made public the biggest acquisition in its history, Koum famously wrote that the deal wouldn't have been completed if WhatsApp "had to compromise on the core principles that will always define our company, our vision and our product".
WhatsApp co-founder Jan Koum has parted ways with Facebook amid the ongoing privacy row.
Facebook has been frequently sued around the world for records related to potentially criminal conversations on WhatsApp, which the company says it can't access because of the app's encryption. After their still ongoing scandal around data privacy and Cambridge Analytica, Facebook is under heavy scrutiny to do something about is data policies. After all, one way Facebook wanted the messaging app to earn money was to let it evolve as the preferred means for businesses to communicate with users.
WhatsApp has resisted orders from government agencies to release data and build backdoors into the app. Still, despite Koum's kind departing words, his exit may be due to the notion that his creation is being turned into a perverse parody of itself.
A year ago though, Facebook got its way, somewhat.
- In January 2012, a hacker published a how to, on changing the status of an arbitrary WhatsApp user, as long as the phone number was known. The founders also clashed with Facebook over building a mobile payments system on WhatsApp in India.
- The idea of WhatsApp started gaining momentum as the platform started to gather more and more audience. WhatsApp sends transaction instructions to PSPs that are processed by UPI.
Facebook and WhatsApp experienced tension over the firm's mandatory end to end encryption, which kept WhatsApp's messages safe from prying eyes, including those on Facebook.
Indeed, such was the controversy that Facebook had to suspend in November 2016 data sharing between its social network and WhatsApp across the European Union. For now, WhatsApp chats are end-to-end encrypted but WhatsApp Payments isn't.
Koum and Acton were openly disparaging of the targeted advertising model. Action famously tweeted his support for the #deletefacebook movement following the Cambridge Analytica revelations. The date of his departure isn't known.
According to reports, Koum had informed the Facebook bosses about his intentions of leaving the company in the past.