As Facebook turned 14 earlier this month, there is a guesstimate that it may actually be growing older. Younger people are apparently losing interest in the social media giant and showing more enthusiasm in joining other sites like Snapchat and Instagram.
A recent report reveals that this year, Facebook is going to lose 9.3 percent of its American users who are 11 and younger. It will also lose 5.6 percent of the ones who are between 12 and 17. In the age group of 18 to 24, there will be a decrease of 5.8 percent. Interestingly, this is the first time Facebook is estimated to experience a decline in these age groups.
The data is also interesting because it reveals that a huge number of Facebook users, who are not supposed to be using it, use it anyway. You need to be at least 13 to be a Facebook user, according to its guidelines. Facebook takes strict actions against those who create an account using false credentials.
Facebook also encourages people to report users who are under 13. It immediately deletes such accounts. Facebook has grown stricter over the years in terms of its guidelines. It regularly takes actions against those violate them.
One may wonder if the younger generation does not want to be restricted that much. According to eMarketer, Facebook is expected to lose 2 million U.S. users in 2018 that are 24 or younger.
According to eMarketer principal analyst Debra Aho Williamson, younger people may be losing interest in Facebook because the older generation is using it more. Williamson wonders if the same thing will happen to Snapchat, which is apparently redesigning itself to suit older users.
“The question will be whether younger users will still find Snapchat cool if more of their parents and grandparents are on it.”
Contrary to the popular perception, it’s not only Instagram that benefits from Facebook’s loss. The image-sharing website is expected to add 1.6 million users this year, who fall in the same age group. On the other hand, Snapchat will add 1.9 million users in 2018. It is also expected to beat Instagram in the number of users in the 12-24 age group.
The scenario is similar in the U.K. as well. According to The Guardian, Facebook will increase its users in the 45-plus age group this year. On the contrary, it will lose significantly in the younger age group (24 or younger). The number of users in the 25-44 age group is expected to remain the same.