The messaging app landscape is one of those arenas where the rich get richer. What makes a messaging app most desirable is that you’re able to use it with as many people as possible. Thanks to a report by SimilarWeb that analyzed Android usage data from 187 countries, we’re now seeing that the runaway winners in this regard are WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger, with WhatsApp winning by a substantial margin.
North American readers might be a bit puzzled by this. After all, Facebook Messenger is the hands-down winner of this category in the US and Canada. However, of the countries surveyed, 109 of them (55.6 percent) preferred WhatsApp over any other messaging system. Facebook Messenger is the crowd favorite in 49 countries, but from there on down the competition gets pretty stiff between a variety of apps such as Viber, Line, WeChat, and Telegram. Even BlackBerry’s quaint little BBM managed to snag a single country: Indonesia! In fact, it’s installed on 87.5 percent of Android devices active in the country, massively outstripping any other country’s BBM use. For comparison, only .42 percent of US Android devices have the BBM app installed. What’s the deal, Indonesia?
You can bet Facebook is laughing their way to the bank, seeing as they own both the world’s most popular and second most popular messaging apps. It’s no surprise that they are looking for better ways to monetize them. Keep in mind that the percentages noted above and in the pie chart do not compare total active users. That was not studied by SimilarWeb. Rather, this report compares apps in terms of how many countries choose them as their favorite messaging app to use. A subtle but important distinction.
What are your thoughts regarding this report that WhatsApp is the most popular messaging app in the world? What messaging apps do you tend to use most frequently? Let us know in the comments below!