In 2023, social media took our time: See just how much

2023 is already in the rearview mirror, so let’s take a fun stroll down memory lane and check out the mobile world in 2023. Thanks to the detailed report by, we’ve got some cool insights to share about our mobile habits. In this article, we will dive deeper into the world of social media.

Have you ever wondered how much time we spend on social media? Guess what? We’re loving our social apps more than ever! Just on Android phones, we spent a whopping 2.3 trillion hours on social media in 2023. Yep, that’s trillion with a “T,” and it is a 9% jump from the previous year. Apparently, we just can’t get enough of scrolling and swiping!

Show me the money: Consumer spending

Here’s where things get really interesting. We’re not just spending time; we’re opening our wallets too. In 2023, we spent nearly $9 billion on social apps. That’s a 13% increase from the year before. TikTok is the star player here, breaking records in the app stores.

It’s the first app (including games) to hit $10 billion in total consumer spending. Just a few years ago, reaching a billion dollars seemed like a dream. Now, TikTok is raking in over a billion every quarter! Most of this cash comes from users buying coins to tip creators during live streams.

It took a while for leading social platforms to expand from advertising as their only source of revenue on mobile. TikTok’s success with tipping, as well as the rise of the subscription model outside of mobile games, has revealed the potential for in-app purchases to boost revenue. Consumer spending on Social apps nearly doubled between 2020 and 2023.

TikTok’s not the only one getting creative with cash. Other social platforms are exploring new ways to make money beyond ads. Think subscriptions and in-app purchases. While TikTok stands out with its one-time purchases, most other big players in the non-game app world are leaning heavily on subscriptions. Snapchat, for example, saw its revenue skyrocket with its Snapchat+ subscription.

Global downloads: A tiny dip but still impressive

Okay, there was a slight drop in global downloads, about 4%, but the numbers are still higher than before 2022, so the social app world looks pretty robust.

Here’s some food for thought: different types of social apps had mixed results in various countries. In the US, for example, the number of people using communication, social networking, and microblogging apps didn’t quite reach the high bar set in 2020. Video and forum apps also saw a bit of a dip.

There’s been some chatter about microblogging apps like X (former Twitter) losing their charm, especially with the rise of video-focused platforms like TikTok. Even with new players in the game, like Threads, microblogging isn’t growing as much as it used to.

On the other hand, in the US, TikTok now makes more than $1 per user. That’s up from 67 cents per user in 2022. Discord is in second place but way behind at 17 cents per user. Snapchat and Instagram are also seeing good growth in user spending.

To wrap it up, TikTok is the king of the social media jungle. It’s leading the pack in downloads and user spending worldwide. But with all this growth, there are concerns about privacy and misinformation. This has even sparked talks of banning the app in some US states.

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