Facebook remains the most popular social networking site in India with 51 per cent of users logging on daily, while WhatsApp tops the list of instant messaging (IM) apps, according to report by global research consultancy firm TNS.
As per the findings of 'Connected Life' -- a global study of the digital attitudes and behaviours of 60,500 internet users across 50 countries, 55 per cent are on instant messaging every day. In India, Facebook continues its dominance for social networking platforms with 51 per cent of the users while WhatsApp is the most popular for instant messaging app with 56 per cent of users, TNS said in a statement.
Commenting on the findings, TNS India Executive Director Parijat Chakraborty said: "The social networking market of India is Facebook centric, which is fuelling the adoption of Facebook Messenger also as the IM platform for private messaging. However, WhatsApp is by far the most popular IM platform in India."
As per the study, Facebook has maintained its position as the world's favourite social platform with almost one third of global internet users (30 per cent) saying they use it every day and with usage in Asia Pacific (APAC) region much higher.
India's Facebook usage of 51 per cent, however, is far lower compared to some countries in APAC markets like Thailand (78 per cent), Taiwan (75 per cent), Hong Kong (72 per cent). Interestingly, India is the second largest base with over 125 million users for Facebook that has 1.49 billion users globally. The US has the highest number of Facebook users.
On the popularity instant messaging in India, Chakraborty said the country had always been a text heavy market. This legacy, coupled with the attraction of connecting with like-minded people privately, is making instant messaging platforms a perfect tool.
"This new-found excitement of largely new mobile- internet users has made India one of the highest globally in average daily number of messages exchanged," Chakraborty said. In APAC, over three out of five internet users or 61 per cent are now using instant messaging every day, while 82 per cent are using it on a weekly basis, the report said.
Overall, "the popularity of IM has soared over the past year, with a 12 per cent uplift in daily usage globally as more people opt for closed messaging platforms such as WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger and WeChat", it added.
IM has achieved high numbers of daily users across much of APAC, with 77 peer cent of those in Malaysia, 73 per cent in Hong Kong, 69 per cent in China and 38 per cent in India, using an IM platform daily. By contrast, some Western markets are lagging behind, including the UK (39 per cent) and the US (35 per cent), it said.
TNS said While IM popularity is rising, traditional social media platforms are still holding strong, allowing content to go viral more quickly. The challenge for brands is to create content that consumers actually want to share.