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  • Writer's pictureJay Taylor

Latest Social Forecast Shows Shifting Platform Use

Nearly 200 million people, or 60.5% of the US population, will use a social network at least once a month this year, up 2.6% over 2017. User growth will remain low throughout the forecast period. However, shifts in devices and—more importantly—social platforms used will be increasingly noticeable.

chart showing Facebook use vs instagram and other social platforms

According to eMarketer estimates, the number of Facebook users will rise 0.9% to 169.5 million in 2018, driven by adoption among older age groups. However, there will be declines between 5.6% and 9.3% among users under 25, for a loss of 2.1 million.

The biggest beneficiary of this outcome will be Snapchat. By the end of this year, 68.0% of internet users ages 12 to 17 will use the platform. Penetration in this age group will outstrip that of Facebook and Instagram (47.2% and 43.6%, respectively).

Meanwhile, Instagram’s user base will increase 13.1% to 104.7 million. Those 35 and older who are creating profiles and connecting with (likely younger) family members less active on Facebook are primarily responsible for this growth.

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