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Messenger wars 2: How Facebook climbed back to number 1

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In the 2 years since our last report, Facebook has strategically climbed its way back to be number one of social messengers. With competition from super secret Snapchat and social messaging ecosystems, WeChat and Line - who will win the battle? Our research of smartphone users in USA, UK, Germany, Japan and China explores the best of social messaging.

Published in: Social Media, Mobile, Technology
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Messenger wars 2: How Facebook climbed back to number 1

  1. Messenger Wars 2 How Facebook climbed back to #1 Source: Max Morse for TechCrunch, 2013 https://www.flickr.com/photos/techcrunch/9728625374/in/photolist-
  2. Since our hugely popular Messenger Wars: How Facebook lost its lead report in 2013 (240k views) Facebook has regained its lead, grown in size and diversified.
  3. Messenger wars in Developed Markets A survey of 2,500 Android and iOS smartphone owners in the US, UK, Germany, Japan and China, carried out by mobile market research company On Device Research.
  4. Top social messaging apps on smartphones Research data from the US, UK, Germany, Japan and China shows that Facebook Messenger is the top messaging app in US and UK UK China Japan US Germany 84% WeChat 75% Line 77% WhatsApp 60% Facebook Messenger 63% Facebook Messenger Source: On Device Research, Jan 2015 N=2500 , US, UK, Germany, Japan and China smartphone owners
  5. Facebook has regained its position as the leader of social messaging apps for our 5 markets Q: Which social messaging app do you use at least once a week? 31% 24% 18% 15% 14% 12% 12% Facebook Messenger WhatsApp Line WeChat QQ Twitter Skype Source: On Device Research, Jan 2015 N=2500 , US, UK, Germany, Japan and China smartphone owners
  6. Rhiannon Williams telegraph.co.uk
  7. Feb 2014 Facebook buys WhatsApp for $19 billion Aug 2014 Facebook removes Messenger and creates separate app Facebook diversifies its portfolio Acquiring Instagram in April 2012 was only the beginning of Facebook’s takeover of social media and messaging
  8. Separating Messenger has given Facebook a significant lead in the US Q: Which social messaging app do you use at least once a week? (by age group) 52% 58% 47% 56% 55% 16-24 25-34 35-44 45-55 Over 55 Facebook Messenger Kik Line Skype Snapchat Twitter Viber WhatsApp WeChat Facebook Messenger… all the other apps! Source: On Device Research, Jan 2015 N=500 ,US smartphone owners
  9. WhatsApp has declinedfrom 2nd to 4th in the US Source: On Device Research, Jan 2015 N=500 ,US smartphone owners
  10. 8% of Americans use WhatsApp weekly. In 2013, it was 35%. Source: On Device Research, Jan 2015 N=500 , US smartphone owners
  11. Growth of ‘alternative’ messengers 15% use Snapchat weekly and it is the 2nd most used social messenger in the US Q: Which social messaging app do you use at least once a week? Since our last report in 2013, Snapchat has grown from 30m to 200m users. Snapchat has also grown by 12%pt for 16-24 year olds since 2013. 16-24 32% 25-34 9% 35+ 3% Snapchat in the US Source: On Device Research, Jan 2015, Business Insider Jan 2015 N=500 , US smartphone owners
  12. Snapchat 56% Facebook Messenger 52% Line 44% 33% Kik 40% WhatsApp GlobalWebIndex reports Snapchat is also the fastest growing social messenger app globally Social and messaging apps growth in the last six months Source: GlobalWebIndex Q4 2014 N=170,000, 32 markets and Facebook is in close 2nd!
  13. Despite Facebook’s global dominance, local apps prevail in Japan and China Q: Which social messaging app do you use at least once a week? US 53% US 5% US 2% CH 3% CH 4% CH 70% JP 10% JP 74% JP 2% UK 53% UK 3% UK 1% DE 36% DE 2% DE 1% Facebook Messenger Line WeChat Source: On Device Research, Jan 2015 N=2500 , US, UK, Germany, Japan and China smartphone owners
  14. 52% 52% 46% 43% 63% 57% 36% 31% 46% 45% 29% 28% 12% 16% 13% 7% 9% 15% 18% 21% 21% 16% 16% 18% Global US China Japan UK Germany Different friends use different apps Because of different features It used to be free, it's not anymore One for people I don't know well, other for friends/family Why do people use different apps? Network effect is still number one reason overall, but for Japan & China – it’s because of different features Source: On Device Research, Jan 2015 N=2500 , US, UK, Germany, Japan and China smartphone owners
  15. China wants video messaging, calls, and stickers Q: How important are the following features in messaging apps to you? China values video messaging and video calls more than any other country. They also care significantly more about stickers! Source: On Device Research, Jan 2015 N=1000 , Japan and China smartphone owners Japan most values ease of use and the ability to send photos. The biggest reason why they are not using a certain app is because they feel ‘it’s missing a feature I require’.
  16. The US thinks it’s vital to be able to call through a messenger app. All countries value ease of use and the ability to send photos. Westerners desire greater security from apps Q: How important are the following features in messaging apps to you? Security is the most important feature overall for the US, UK, and Germany– with an average 79% of respondents rating it most highly. Source: On Device Research, Jan 2015 N=1500 , US, UK, and German smartphone owners
  17. Source: cnet.com Apr 2014, Business Insider May 2013, pcworld.com Oct 2013 .
  18. 2.2 2.3 2.3 2.8 3 China UK Germany USA Japan Source: On Device Research, Jan 2015 N=2500 , US, UK, Germany, Japan and China smartphone owners Average number of messaging apps installed
  19. 3.0 2.3 2.4 2.1 China US 2013 2015 Both China and US have seen an increase in average number of messaging apps per person Average number of messaging apps installed Source: On Device Research, Jan 2015 N=1000 , US and China smartphone owners
  20. Contrasting communication patterns in Asia China prefers voice call and SMS, Japan favours email Q: How often do you use these ways of staying in touch on your phone? Source: On Device Research, Jan 2015 N=1000, Japan and China smartphone owners Per country charts can be found in the annex at the end of the presentation. 45% 37% 35% 47% Social messaging apps Voice calls SMS Email Daily 51% 61% 53% 24% Social messaging apps Voice calls SMS Email Daily
  21. Skype is comfortably #1 for video Skype’s global popularity is well known. Our research shows that Skype is enjoying the top spot among our 5 countries researched, with decent market share even in Line-dominated Japan. Skype calls 300 million people users of its app. 45% 47% 49% 21% 21% US UK Germany China Japan % of smartphone owners using weekly Source: On Device Research, Jan 2015 N=2500 , US, UK, Germany, Japan and China smartphone owners
  22. ‘Social media is pretty much dead’ and social messaging will take over – Fred Wilson, Venture Capitalist (Twitter, Tumblr, Foursquare) Source: Business Insider, Dec 2014.
  23. Rohit Dadwal Campaign Asia Feb 2015
  24. 50 billion messages a day Shared via 6 services in 2014 iMessage, Facebook Messenger, WhatsApp, Snapchat, BBM and WeChat Source: Deloitte 2014 https://www2.deloitte.com/content/dam/Deloitte/au/Documents/technology-media-telecommunications/deloitte-au-tmt-short-messaging-services- versus-instant-messaging-011014.pdf = double the volume of SMS that were sent!
  25. Undefeated champion for communication Social messaging is most popular way to stay in touch in developed markets. Q: How often do you use these ways of staying in touch on your phone? %ofrespondents 34% 18% 24% 15% 22% 29% 23% 21% 8% 14% 9% 13% 64% 60% 55% 49% Social Messaging Voice calls SMS Email Average of 5 countries 10+ times a day 2-3 times/day Once a day At least once/day combined Source: On Device Research, Jan 2015 N=2500 , US, UK, Germany, Japan and China smartphone owners
  26. On Device Research uses the mobile internet to gain access to consumer opinions at any time, place or country. Want Excel tables with the survey data? Get in touch!
  27. We have undertaken projects in 79 countries Over 25 million people have taken one of our surveys on their mobile
  28. ondeviceresearch.com Follow us: For more info: PohLinCarter-Lau pohlin@ondeviceresearch.com @pohlinlau
  29. Appendix
  30. Source: On Device Research, November 2013 N=1406 in the US, n=544 in China, smartphone owners US and UK most similar for communication Q: How often do you use these ways of staying in touch on your phone? 33% 18% 37% 22% 70% 63% 65% 63% Social messaging apps Voice calls SMS Email More than 10 times a day Daily 40% 22% 42% 18% 74% 66% 75% 58% Social messaging apps Voice calls SMS Email More than 10 times a day Daily
  31. Contrasting communication patterns in Asia China prefers voice call and SMS, Japan favours email Q: How often do you use these ways of staying in touch on your phone? Source: On Device Research, Jan 2015 N=1000, Japan and China smartphone owners Per country charts can be found in the annex at the end of the presentation. 23% 5% 11% 13% 45% 37% 35% 47% Social messaging apps Voice calls SMS Email More than 10 times a day Daily 23% 24% 15% 7% 51% 61% 53% 24% Social messaging apps Voice calls SMS Email More than 10 times a day Daily
  32. Q: How often do you use these ways of staying in touch on your phone? 81% of Germans use social messaging apps daily Source: On Device Research, Jan 2015 N=500 , Germany smartphone owners Germans are Super Social Messengers 54% use it at least 10x daily!
  33. Germans use social messaging almost twice as much as Japanese respondents Q: How often do you use these ways of staying in touch on your phone? (Social messaging) 52% 40% 33% 23% 23% 81% 74% 70% 51% 45% Germany UK USA China Japan More than 10 times a day Daily Source: On Device Research, Jan 2015 N=2500 , US, UK, Germany, Japan and China smartphone owners
  34. All ages in China are active social messenger users 2.1 3.2 3.1 2.8 2.4 2.6 2.9 3.0 2.3 2.2 2.0 2.5 2.9 1.7 2.0 1.8 2.3 3.0 1.8 2.1 Japan UK China USA Germany 16-24 25-34 35-44 45+ 3 4 2 1 Source: On Device Research, Jan 2015 N=2500 , US, UK, Germany, Japan and China smartphone owners
  35. Top 3 social messaging apps on smartphones Research data from the US, UK, Germany, Japan and China 60% 29% 25% Facebook Messenger Skype Twitter 75% 42% 25% Line Twitter Facebook Messenger 84% 83% 50% Wechat QQ Sina Weibo 77% 49% 30% Whatsapp Facebook Messenger Skype 63% 46% 36% Facebook Messenger Whatsapp Skype UK China Japan US Germany Source: On Device Research, Jan 2015 N=2500 , US, UK, Germany, Japan and China smartphone owners
  36. Top 3 video call apps on smartphones Research data from the US, UK, Germany, Japan and China (excluding WeChat and QQ) 45% 29% 21% Skype Facetime Google Hangouts 60% 21% 21% Line Skype Facetime 33% 22% 21% Facetime Line Skype 49% 20% 16% Skype Facetime Google Hangouts 47% 38% 14% Skype Facetime Viber UK China Japan US Germany Source: On Device Research, Jan 2015 N=2500 , US, UK, Germany, Japan and China smartphone owners
  37. In China and UK, nearly half use WhatsApp more than 6 months ago Q: Compared to 6 months ago, do you use WhatsApp… 40% 39% 22% About the same More Less 46% 46% 35% 35% 32% China UK US Japan Germany Use WhatsApp more than 6 months ago Source: On Device Research, Jan 2015 N=2500 , US, UK, Germany, Japan and China smartphone owners
  38. Facebook Messenger is leading growth for Facebook portfolio Source: comScore via quartz.com
  39. 58% 52%52% 36% Global 2013 Global 2015 Different friends use different apps Because of different features Different features will no longer drive use of multiple messenger apps. Q: Why do you use different messaging apps? Source: On Device Research, Jan 2015 N=2500 , US, UK, Germany, Japan and China smartphone owners
  40. In the US, respondents say that ‘not having enough space on their phone’ is the number one reason why they’re not using a messenger app With paying upfront for handset is common practice in the US many opt for lowest (and therefore cheapest) storage capacity available – often 16GB with no expandable memory. Source: On Device Research, Jan 2015, Which 2014 N=500 , US smartphone owners Low storage capacity = less apps installed Q: Why are you not using these messaging apps (one want to use but are currently not using)?

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