Will Messenger Lose Out to Snapchat, Instagram Through 2021?

eMarketer found that teens and young adults are engaging less with Messenger and more with Snapchat and Instagram

These teens are more likely to be on Snapchat or Instagram than on Messenger, according to eMarketer
LeoPatrizi/iStock

eMarketer lowered its growth projections for Facebook Messenger through 2021 in favor of sister application Instagram and rival Snapchat.

The research firm found that Messenger dominated the chat app market in the U.S., with 125.4 million users, up 7.5 percent compared with 2016.

However, eMarketer also found that teens and young adults (age 18 through 24) are engaging less with Messenger and more with Snapchat and Instagram, so it lowered its projections for Messenger user growth by 9.4 million users from its first-quarter numbers.

Fellow Facebook-owned messaging app WhatsApp will have 20.5 million U.S. users in 2017, up 9.5 percent from the previous year, according to eMarketer.

Other findings from eMarketer’s latest forecast on app usage and ad spending include:

  • In-app mobile ad spending will reach $45.26 billion in 2017, and by 2018, it will account for 80.6 percent of mobile ad spending in the U.S.
  • Mobile web spending is still growing, but its share of total mobile ad spending is diminishing, and it will reach $13.12 billion in 2017, only a single-digit gain.
  • Spending on mobile app install ads will rise 29 percent in 2017, to $7.57 billion.
  • Americans will use an average of 20.7 apps per month this year, but eMarketer sees that figure declining, expecting smartphone users to “consolidate their behavior into fewer apps.”
  • 84.6 million Americans will use news apps at least once per month this year, up 8.9 percent from 2016, with eMarketer saying that individual news apps are being held down by the large percentage of U.S. users who consume news via Facebook.
  • Sports apps will be used at least monthly by 42.8 million people in the U.S., up 9.8 percent year-over-year.
  • 157.4 million Americans will use weather apps at least once per month this year, up 7 percent from 2016.
  • Map or navigation apps will be used at least once monthly by 142.9 million people in the U.S., up 7.8 percent year-over-year.