Snapchat loses 3 million users as competition with Instagram heats up

Daily user numbers shrink 1.5% to 188 million as rival implements similar features

Ben Chapman
Wednesday 08 August 2018 09:52 BST
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Facebook, which owns Instagram, launched its Stories feature in August 2016 in the face of competition from Snapchat
Facebook, which owns Instagram, launched its Stories feature in August 2016 in the face of competition from Snapchat

Snapchat lost 3 million daily active users in the last quarter as the social media platform lost ground to Instagram.

Snapchat’s daily user numbers shrank 1.5 per cent to 188 million in the second quarter of 2018, down from 191 million in the previous quarter, the platform’s owner Snap said. The company also lost daily audience in its most valuable market, North America.

Facebook, which owns Instagram, launched its Stories feature in August 2016 in the face of competition from Snapchat. Both Stories and Snapchat allow users to post short videos that are only available for a limited period of time.

Snap’s revenue jumped 44 per cent to $262m (£203m) from $182m in the same period last year and the company trimmed net losses by 20 per cent to $353m in Q2 2018 – compared to a net loss of $443m in Q2 2017.

“We are excited by the progress we have been making and are optimistic about the opportunities ahead as we continue to invest in innovation,” Evan Spiegel, Snap chief executive and cofounder, said.

Snapchat faced a backlash against an unpopular redesign in November that prompted 1.2 million users to sign a petition urging the company to revert to the previous layout.

Mr Spiegel said on Tuesday that the company took users’ feedback seriously.

“We feel that we have now addressed the biggest frustrations we’ve heard and are eager to make more progress on the tremendous opportunity we now have to show more of the right content to the right people,” he said.

At the time of the update, Mr Spiegel said Snap was trying to separate “the social from the media”.

In the new version, Stories, Snaps and messages from friends are grouped on the page to the left of the main camera screen, while Stories from publishers are grouped on a new Discover page, to the right of the camera screen.

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