Facebook plans to add its name to both Instagram and WhatsApp as politicians call for the social media giant to be broken apart and the Federal Trade Commission investigates Facebook’s acquisition of both companies.
The company plans to rename the apps “Instagram from Facebook” and “WhatsApp from Facebook,” according to The Information, which cites anonymous sources.
“We want to be clearer about the products and services that are part of Facebook,” Facebook spokeswoman Bertie Thompson told The Information after confirming the massive rebranding. The move comes after CEO Mark Zuckerberg expressed frustration that Facebook doesn’t get enough credit for both apps’ success.
The Federal Trade Commission’s ongoing antitrust investigation into Facebook is looking at whether Facebook bought Instagram and WhatsApp before they could become a threat to its business. The social media giant bought Instagram for $1 billion in 2012 and WhatsApp for $19 billion in 2014.
Politicians and presidential candidates such as Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Massachusetts) have said Facebook’s ownership of three of the most popular social networks in the world means it essentially holds a monopoly over social media as a whole. Warren and others argue that the company should be split up, with Instagram and WhatsApp being spun off from Facebook.
We’ve reached out to Facebook to confirm the name change and obtain more details as to when teh change will roll out. We’ll update this story when we hear back.