New Delhi, June 21: The photo-sharing app, which is owned by Facebook, Instagram has revealed that it has hit 1 billion monthly users and unveiled plans to expand into long-form videos.
Facebook last revealed the number of users on its platform in September, when there were 800 million people using the app. It has added around 200 million users each year for the past two years.
The user update shows Instagram moving further ahead of Snapchat, which lags behind with around 100 million monthly active users.
Facebook has positioned Instagram against Snapchat, both competing for a similar audience. That massive audience could be a powerful draw for IGTV, the longer-form video hub it’s launching for creators today.
While IGTV monetization options are expected in the future, content makers may flock to it early just to get exposure and build their fan base.
While Snapchat's daily user count grew just 2.13 percent in Q1 2018 to 191 million, and Facebook's monthly count grew 3.14 percent to reach 2.196 billion, Instagram is growing closer to 5 percent per quarter.
Hitting the 1 billion user milestone could put pressure on Instagram to carry its weight in the Facebook family and bring home more cash. Facebook doesn’t break out Instagram’s revenue and has never given any guidance about it.
But eMarketer estimates that Instagram will generate $5.48 billion in U.S. ad revenue in 2018, up 70 percent from last year. It reports that Instagram makes up 28.2 percent of Facebook’s mobile ad revenue.
IGTV could open even more premium mobile ad inventory that traditional television advertisers crave, which helped push Facebook’s share price up more than 2.2 percent to $202.