This major milestone comes as Instagram faces increased scrutiny from lawmakers and stiffer competition from TikTok.
Despite US lawmakers’ concerns about Instagram’s addictive potential, the app has surpassed 2 billion monthly active users, according to people familiar with the matter. One person, who asked not to be named, revealed that Instagram hit this milestone about a week before Facebook changed its name to Meta in late October 2021.
Instagram hasn’t made its user count public since surpassing 1 billion monthly active users in June 2018. The popular app avoids talking about growth at a time when lawmakers and regulators say Facebook’s ability to control the market has exceeded its limits.
Instagram launched in 2010, was acquired by Facebook for about $1 billion two years later. This is seen as the central sale in CEO effort to move from web to mobile Mark Zuckerberg’s . Even in the face of negative publicity, Instagram is more important than ever to the fate of parent company Meta.
The speed at which it expands to 2 billion users is particularly important for Instagram, given the stiff competition emerging from the short-video sharing app TikTok, said David Heger, an analyst at Edward Jones. “This number tells me that even in the face of TikTok’s recent challenge, Instagram is definitely the right app for everyone,” Heger said.
According to results from a survey released by Forrester last month, 63% of Americans between the ages of 12 and 17 used TikTok weekly this year, up from Instagram’s 57%. In terms of downloads, TikTok has been installed 596.1 million times globally this year, across Apple and Google devices, surpassing 570.7 million installs for Instagram, according to SensorTower.
Zuckerberg reacted the way he usually does, which is cloning a rival app. Facebook launched the Reels video sharing feature in August 2020. In its third-quarter earnings report, the company said it would make Reels a core part of its Facebook and Instagram services to try to attract users between the ages of 18 and 29.