Social Media

WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger are the most preferred messaging apps, according to an annual survey

WhatsApp is one of the most popular messaging mobile app worldwide with strong markets outside of the United States.
Photo by Andrea Piacquadio on

WhatsApp Messenger or WhatsApp was founded in 2009 by ex-Yahoo! employees Brian Acton and Jan Koum. It’s a freeware & cross-platform messaging app which includes VoIP service. It allows users to send text messages and make voice or video calls. WhatsApp was acquired by Facebook, Inc in February 2014 for 19 billion U.S. Dollars.

In January 2009, after realizing the rise and potential of the app industry on App Store, Koum and Acton came up with an idea of a new type of messaging app. They hired a Russian developer Igor Solomennikov through a website called After a few failed versions of WhatsApp, Koum almost giving up, and looking for a new job, Apple launched Push Notifications and WhatsApp 2.0 was released which increased app’s active users to 250,000 in June 2009.

In April 2020, 2 billion users were accessing WhatsApp on a monthly basis. It is one of the most popular messaging mobile app with strong markets outside of the United States.

WhatsApp has always proven itself as a low-cost alternative to operator-based text messaging or SMS. According to a survey by DataReportal and other various sources conducted in October 2019, WhatsApp had 2000 million (2 Billion), active monthly users.

Statistic: Most popular global mobile messenger apps as of October 2019, based on number of monthly active users (in millions) | Statista
Find more statistics at Statista

India is the biggest market in the world with up to 200 million users whereas, the US being a small market with 23 million users. About 65 Billion WhatsApp messages are sent per day or about 29 Million per minute. Two billion minutes are spent making WhatsApp voice and video calls per day.

WhatsApp had 2 Billion active monthly users worldwide with India being the biggest market in the world with upto 200 million users.

Facebook Messenger or Messenger another free messaging service was originally developed as Facebook Chat in 2008. Later in 2011, it was revamped into a standalone service for iOS and Android. Facebook Messenger, on the other hand, had 1.3 billion monthly active users, according to the survey. WhatsApp & Messenger are the topmost preferred free messaging apps by users both owned by Facebook, Inc

WhatsApp & Facebook Messenger are world’s most popular messaging apps with 2 billion & 1.3 billion monthly active users each, according to survey

The closest contender to the Facebook messenger is another popular messaging app called WeChat, developed by a Chinese owned company Tencent. First released in 2011, it became one of the world’s largest standalone mobile apps. By 2018, it had managed to get over 1 billion monthly active users. According to the chart above, currently, it has about 1.2 billion monthly active users. Just about 0.1 billion active users are less than Facebook Messenger.

Other messaging apps like QQ Mobile (Former ICQ) and Telegram have also managed to gain popularity with 731 million and 400 million monthly active users each. But they are still lagging behind most popular apps like WhatsApp etc.

Tencent QQ holds the Guinness World Record for the highest number of simultaneous online users on an instant messaging program with 210,212,085 users online on July 3, 2014.

Snapchat is also another popular multimedia messaging app, mostly among the younger generations. Snapchat was created by Evan SpiegelBobby Murphy, and Reggie Brown and was first released in September 2011. Snapchat is owned by Snap Inc (Formally Snapchat Inc.). Snapchat was the first to develop the idea of “Stories” that remain for 24 hours. Also, it is known for users interacting with virtual stickers and augmented reality objects. According to the survey, Snapchat currently has 398 monthly active users with an average of more than 4 billion Snaps being sent each day.

Snapchat has 398 monthly active users with an average of more than 4 billion Snaps being sent each day.

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