Instagram’s Stories platform has hit 250 million daily users, the company has announced, surpassing main competitor Snapchat’s user count.
Stories launched on Instagram back in August 2016, letting users share short videos (“stories”) that would remain visible for 24 hours – not unlike how Snapchat works. Although Stories wasn’t exactly a new idea, it quickly proved to be popular nonetheless, with over 150 million people using the feature by January 2017.
In comparison, Snapchat somewhat sluggishly hit 166 million daily users in May. Overall, Instagram says it has reached 700 million global users.
While some have criticized Instagram for being a “copycat,” Facebook’s global head of sales, Carolyn Everson, dismissed the allegations. In an interview with CNBC, the executive said that Facebook invented the “Feed” format — a collection of media shared from friends and other pages – which Instagram and other competitors currently use.
She said that both everyday users and businesses like Stories. “If you think about it a year ago when we sat together, Instagram Stories didn’t exist,” Everson told CNBC. “Today on the platform, we not only have 250 million people using it, but actually a third (of the most viewed stories) are businesses using Instagram Stories and one million are advertisers.
Everyone added that they see the Stories user base continue to grow as different demographics take advantage of it. “We think Stories is also another format that not only consumers but advertisers use,” she said. “You are going to see Stories in a lot of different platforms.”
In other Instagram-related news, the company has announced that users will be able to share replays of live videos to their Stories.