Facebook versus the rest: The Facebook family (Facebook, Instagram, Facebook Messenger, WhatsApp) remains dominant in the social media landscape

Social media continue to be very popular in Flanders. Instagram is the strongest grower, showing a striking rise in monthly usage, especially in the 25-34 age group. Facebook remains the social network with the largest number of users in Flanders.

Among the messaging services, the number of daily users of Facebook Messenger and WhatsApp is on the increase. For the first time WhatsApp has overtaken Facebook Messenger as the most popular online messaging service. The number of people who use Snapchat daily remains stable, although it is important to note that Snapchat fell sharply in the youngest age segment.

To sum up, social media are increasingly setting the stage for a game of “Facebook versus the rest”. Remember, Instagram, WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger are also members of the Facebook family. Among the social networks, only YouTube is more or less on the same level as Facebook and Instagram. Networks such as LinkedIn, Pinterest and Twitter still have far fewer users. Of the online messaging services, WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger are the undisputed market leaders.

The intensification of social media in our lives goes hand in hand with rising concerns about the time we spend on them. In the youngest age group, we are seeing a striking increase in the percentage of users saying that they can’t get through the day without social media. A nuance here is that the same youngest group is also the most convinced of the benefits of social media; they feel better informed and more connected thanks to social media.

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Infogrpahic Social Media | imec.digimeter 2018

For companies


Prof. Dr. Lieven De Marez

Head of imec - Ghent University - MICT


Olivier Rits

Program Manager imec.livinglabs

Digital Transformation? It takes two to tango

Biggest conclusion of Digimeter 2018 is that consumers are building a more grown up relationship with their digital partner. It takes two to tango; the consumer expects of you, companies who offer digital solutions, that they are involved as a full-fledged partner in your new digital innovations.

The success of an evolution to an AI and data driven economy are largely dependent on the consumer’s trust in the technology and the companies behind that technology. Digimeter shows that only 10% has no confidence in technology en two thirds of consumers see clear advantages.

More then ever transparency in data use and business models will be a differentiating factor in the digital playing field. We will stay on top of attitudes to AI and data driven products and services, on the one hand through Digimeter and on the other hand through organising user testing in real contexts for next generation digital solutions. This way consumers and companies can explore the advantages of digital technology together.

Is your company working on digital innovation? Do you have an idea, a first prototype or an almost finished product, but are you missing real life feedback of potential end users? Contact Olivier Rits.

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