Data gathered by BuyShares.co.uk indicates that by 2023 approximately 3.43bn people will be using social networks. The figure represents 44.03% of the 7.79 estimated global population.
Facebook-owned networks dominate
According to the data, the 2023 figures represent a growth of 11.36% from the 2020 estimated number of 3.08bn users. By next year, about 3.21bn people will be using social networks which will grow to 3.32bn in 2022.
Over the last decade, the lowest number of people on social network platforms was in 2010 at 0.97bn, a growth of 217.52% by 2020 estimates. In 2019, social network users stood at 2.95bn, a growth of 6.11% from the 2018 figure of 2.78bn.
An overview of the top social networking apps downloads in the Apple App Store worldwide shows that Facebook-owned networks are leading. WhatsApp Web Messenger has the highest downloads at 8.62m followed by Facebook as the network at 6.86m. Facebook Messenger is third with 6.79m downloads.
Chinese based WeChat has 3.3m downloads followed by Telegram Messanger at 2.89m. Discord had 2.09m downloads while QQ lies in the seventh slot with 1.63 million downloads.
LINE had the eighth highest downloads at 1.43m. From our reviewed social networks, Skype para iPhone had the second least downloads at one million followed by Google Duo’s 0.99 million.
In the coming years, various factors are set to influence the growth of social networks. According to the research report, “In the last ten years, the social network industry was largely based on alternating monopolies, underpinned by extraordinary growth.
“As highlighted, Facebook owns the majority of networks like Instagram and Whatsapp which are popular among young people. However, there might be a shift considering that new platforms like TikTok are coming up targeting specifically young people.”
The research notes that smartphone growth will also play a vital role in the expansion of social networks.