How India helped Snapchat increase its users and revenue

(Image credit: Snap)

Snapchat has reported increase in both users and revenue, and these have been possible because it grew in emerging markets like India. In India alone, Snapchat grew by over 100% in daily active users over the past year, as per Evan Spiegel, its CEO and Co-Founder.

Snapchat announced its second quarter earnings yesterday, and its user base is up by 9 million people daily over last quarter, and its revenue is up 17 percent year over year, at $454 million. Its DAU (Daily Active Users) is now up to 238 million.

Interestingly, the growth of Snapchat  in US and European markets is by 2 and 1 million respectively. Whereas in the 'rest of the world', it grew by a whopping 6 million.

"In the Rest of World, the DAU grew by 37 percent to reach 77 million. The outsized growth in Rest of World follows the rebuild of our Android application in 2019, and our subsequent efforts to further localize the product," said Derek Andersen, Snap CFO (opens in new tab).

"A good example of this momentum can be seen in India, where daily active users more than doubled year-over-year in Q2. We see a significant opportunity to continue to grow our community as we further invest in localization of our product through language support, local content, and marketing partnerships across a variety of geographies," he added.

Snap, Android and India

Snap's growth is generally attributed to the improvements in how Snapchat runs on different devices.

"We are continuing to invest in app performance and localization to make our service more accessible to people all over the world, with Snapchat now available to over two billion people in their native language," Spiegel said (opens in new tab).

One of the missing links in the past in Snapchat's growth was Android. Snapchat was more or less blindsided to Android, and this kind of precluded its growth in markets like India.

In 2018, Spiegel publicly acknowledged the issues with running Snapchat on Android. Chastened by the bitter experience, Snapchat came up with a revamped Android app in 2019. And not surprisingly, the adoption among regions like India has picked up steam.

Spiegel himself acknowledged this: "We are also continuing to invest in app performance and localization to make our service more accessible to people all over the world, with Snapchat now available to over two billion people in their native language."

He added: "These efforts have helped us grow even faster in emerging markets like India, where we’ve seen over 100 percent growth in daily active users over the past year."

Snapchat has been constantly evolving as an app, making it much more than just an image sharing platform. For its next major change, ‘Minis’ have been added.

Announced at the Snap Partner Summit last month, Minis are a new way of letting developers provide an app experience to users within Snapchat itself, thus making them easier to share amongst friends. 

The first wave of Snap Minis are now available for users around the world, including India. The most prominent one is Headspace. The Headspace Mini has been designed with a sense of calmness and minimalism. It can be accessed via a simple search or by hitting the rocket icon in chats.

Increase in group activities

Spiegel was overall happy with how Snap is doing, despite difficult market conditions.

"While our revenue growth rate continues to be impacted by ongoing market disruptions, the fundamentals of our business are strong, and the high levels of engagement on our service are backed by years of investment in our self-serve advertising platform, which is helping our partners achieve success and grow their businesses in this uncertain environment."

Spiegel said Snap has seen an increase in group activities, like games, calls, and chats. Snap launched five games this quarter and saw average daily time spent in games more than double in the month of March.

Spiegel also pointed out that its seeing increased usage of its AR tools, with user time spent engaging with Lenses growing 37% year-over-year. 

"Today Snapchatters play with Lenses created by our community six times as often as they did just last year, and these Lenses now drive more than a quarter of all Lens engagement on Snapchat," Spiegel said.

Source: Snap Inc (opens in new tab).

Balakumar K
Senior Editor

Over three decades as a journalist covering current affairs, politics, sports and now technology. Former Editor of News Today, writer of humour columns across publications and a hardcore cricket and cinema enthusiast. He writes about technology trends and suggest movies and shows to watch on OTT platforms.