Personal Finance

Instagram Now Has Nearly Twice as Many Users as Twitter

Twtr Vs Inst
Twtr Vs Inst

Data sources: SEC filings and Instagram blog posts. Chart by author.

More importantly, it even appears that Instagram's MAU growth is accelerating . It took 13 months to grow from 100 million to 200 million; approximately nine months for each respective jump to 300 million, 400 million, and 500 million; while the last 100 million were added in less than six months.

Copying works

With the looming threat of Snapchat wooing away teenage users, Instagram has aggressively replicated many features of the growing social network that popularized ephemeral photo sharing. Most notably, the company released Instagram Stories in August, which is nearly identical to Snapchat Stories in every way. Instagram Stories disappear after 24 hours. Snapchat responded by copying a popular rewind feature that Instagram Stories offers.

The escalating back and forth replication is helping boost Instagram's MAU base as the net result is more popular features for users. And it has no signs of stopping, as Facebook continues to invest in live video and photo filters , another hallmark of Snapchat. Meanwhile, Twitter is still slowly adding new features to its own service, recently announcing live-streaming, in an effort to boost its own MAU metrics.

With Snap's IPO expected next year, 2017 will be an interesting year for social network competition.

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