Twitter CEO Dick Costolo says mobile usage and revenue are outpacing the desktop Web version of the microblog, and that he doesn't concern himself about an IPO.
SAN FRANCISCO--Twitter has become an increasingly deep reservoir of personal data, with more than 400 million tweets per day -- up from 340 million just a month ago -- and associated metadata pouring daily into its servers.
In an interview at the Economist's Ideas Economy: Information 2012 conference, Twitter CEO Dick Costolo said that the majority of Twitter users are mobile and more active than their desktop counterparts.
In response to interviewer Tom Standage, the Economist's digital editor, Costolo said, "because tweets are 140 characters, and born of mobile and constrained that way, when we designed the ad platform our ads would go everywhere tweets go, and the only way is if the ads are tweets. We have an ad platform that is already inherently suited to mobile. Even though we launched the ad platform on the Web already, a couple of weeks ago we saw mobile revenue in a day greater than non-mobile." In addition, the engagement level of mobile users is higher than their non-mobile counterparts.
Costolo added that Twitter's mobile advertising is "doing delightfully well," but didn't offer any specifics as to what "delightful" means.
Costolo was somewhat more forthcoming about mining the data trove it collects. "The fascinating thing about big numbers is you get macro trends and events, and incredible personal moments where you have to dive all the way to see things," he said. He did discussed how Twitter is focused on simplifying the user interface and surfacing the "pulse of the world" with the Discovery component.
"We are spending an inordinate amount of resources and time improving that...and it will use all the signals you provide to personalize the discover component," Costolo said.
As in previous statements, Costolo said that IPO doesn't occupy his thoughts much. "I just don't worry about that stuff...if you wait until the business and business results speak for themselves, you can be a public company on your own terms," he said.