Instagram, now with 200 million users, is breathing down Twitter's neck


How could one not love the platform that can easily make you look like a professional photographer or videographer? Thanks to its variety of filters, chances are it would be hard for you not to.

We're talking about Instagram, of course. Good news is that its user count has grown rapidly.

"Today, we're excited to share that the Instagram community has grown to more than 200 million Instagrammers capturing and sharing their lives every month," says Instagram in its blog post.

Latest figures from research firm eMarketer also show that Instagram usage in the U.S. has increased quickly, with close to 35 million people accessing the photo and video sharing site at least once in a month in 2013. Its survey also reveals that almost 25 percent of smartphone users in the U.S. will take a photo, use filter and share their artwork on Instagram on a monthly basis, or at least log in to the site just to check out posts of their friends.

eMarketer provides important insights and analysis on digital marketing, commerce and media, deemed essential in understanding the ever-changing digital environment, and uses data from thousands of sources.

The research company also says the number of Instagram and Twitter users are interestingly similar. Instagram user data is almost close to reaching the regular usage levels of social networking site Twitter, specifically on smartphones and among Gen Xers and millennials.

eMarketer likewise assesses that 43.2 million US consumers were monthly Twitter users in 2013, which is about 17.6 percent of the total Internet user population. This is limited to smartphone users of Twitter only.

Instagram users, on the other hand, are about 16.1 percent of the total Internet user population.

In 2013, Twitter only hit about 30.8 million. In 2014, estimates show an increase to 37.3 million or about 22.7 percent of smartphone users in the U.S. Still, these figures are a bit below the total number of Instagram users, the report said.

The research company also notes one possible change for Instagram, which is an equal share of users from both genders. Around two-thirds of users of Instagram in 2012 were female, which made up the majority of users. In 2016, the ratio will be 55 percent female vs. 45 percent male.

eMarketer also estimates U.S. Facebook users in smartphone at 123.7 million in 2014.

Twitter had its launching in 2006 and is four years older than Instagram. The latter continues to be very popular among the younger generation, particularly those between 18 and 34 years old, even said to be more popular than Twitter. Which is why Mark Zuckerberg's move of buying Instagram for a billion-dollar deal was a good move, as it helps keep the younger generation entwined to its platform, despite talks that this demographic has gone tired of its first social platform, Facebook.

Instagram is said to be currently working on a business deal with brand marketers, who in turn see the new platform as one that's beautiful. It actually started ad displays in November 2013, thus allowing Zuckerberg to start making money from it as well.

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