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WhatsApp becomes the most popular Facebook-owned application: App Annie report

Over 685b hours spent globally in social and comms apps in 2018, up 35% from 2016
Over 685b hours spent globally in social and comms apps in 2018, up 35% from 2016 (AFP)

WhatsApp has also been named the most used social and communication app globally.

WhatsApp surpassed Facebook for the first time as the most popular Facebook-owned application in September, 2018, according to the latest App Annie report.

WhatsApp Messenger registered about 30% growth in the last 24 months whereas Facebook and Facebook Messenger registered 20% and 15% growth respectively. Instagram continued to rise in popularity with an impressive 35% growth, according to the report.

App Annie in The State of Mobile 2019 report pointed out that WhatsApp had acquired mainstream status by taking over telcos' default SMS services.

"Although their value prop has subsequently expanded, this core offering has resulted in continued success in emerging markets where the cost of using a mobile device is still high relative to average income. While the app has been operated autonomously, it has been owned by Facebook since 2014," said the report.

WhatsApp has also been named the most used social and communication app globally. The application was the most popular in markets such as India, Brazil, Germany and the UK. WeChat ranked top in China whereas Line was the most popular in Japan.

Instagram saw the strongest global growth in its user base
Instagram saw the strongest global growth in its user base (App Annie )

"Among the most used Social and Communication apps globally, WhatsApp Messenger topped the chart for per user engagement in 2018, measured by average monthly sessions per user. This illustrates the historical demand for free calls and messages, a simple user interface, ease of use to add contacts and interest in encrypted messaging. As a result, WhatsApp has benefited greatly from the network effect over time," added the report.

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The App Annie report does not divulge the total user base. According to WhatsApp, the application had about 1.5 billion monthly active users globally as of February, 2018. India was its one of the top markets with 200 million users.

While WhatsApp has indeed become a preferred alternative to default text messaging application, the instant-messaging platform is headed for big changes in the future. Facebook has already confirmed it will soon show advertisements in the Status section. The company recently opened WhatsApp Messenger to businesses and has begun to monetise the platform through a dedicated WhatsApp Business application.

 

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