Facebook (FB) is set to report its Q1 2019 earnings after the closing bell on Wednesday.
Analysts are projecting $14.9 billion in revenue, and earnings per share of $1.62. That's compared to $16.6 billion in revenue and $2.38 earnings per share in Q4 2018.
Facebook's most important metrics are its monthly active users and daily active users — respectively, the number of people using the platform at least once a month and once a day. The greater the number of monthly and daily active users, the more Facebook can charge for ads.
Analysts are calling for 2.37 billion monthly active users and 1.56 billion daily active users. That would eclipse last quarter's 2.32 billion monthly active users and 1.52 billion daily active users.
Facebook missed analysts' user estimates in Q3 2018 as growth slowed, but rebounded in Q4 2018. User numbers for the social networking giant seem to be mostly unaffected by the company's recent missteps and controversies.
Instagram, in particular, could prove to be a bright spot for the company, with investors and analysts looking for guidance on how the beta version of the service's Checkout in-app purchasing feature has been progressing.
Security and safety are still problems
Facebook's earnings follow an admission by the company earlier this month that it drastically understated the number of users whose passwords were stored in plain text on internal Facebook servers, a move that flies in the face of security best practices.
The social network originally said that tens of thousands of Instagram users and hundreds of millions of Facebook Light users were impacted by the lapse in security, but revised that number to tens of millions of Instagram accounts.
Prior to that, the company came under fire for its response to one of the shooters in a Christchurch, New Zealand mosque massacre live streaming the attack in March. Critics contend that Facebook didn't take the video down fast enough, and that the social network was only aware the video existed when the company was told about it by police.
The video was subsequently re-uploaded by other users, and will likely continue to be re-uploaded over time.
CEO Mark Zuckerberg has vowed to remake Facebook with security and privacy serving as the two cornerstones of the company. In a March post published on Zuckerberg's own Facebook page, the CEO said he wanted to make Facebook a more personal experience and focus in on smaller conversations between tighter groups of users, rather than the town square-style ecosystem Facebook has become.
The social network is also still grappling with issues relating to fake news, and the spread of disinformation on the platform. Zuckerberg has said he will spend more than $3.8 billion to improve the safety and security of the site and combat issues like hate speech and disinformation.
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