The use of social media networks has grown immensely over the years. At first, social media platforms were most popular among the younger generations than older generations. However, the technology evolution has changed all of that; social media platforms are now the most common medium of communication.
According to January 2022 statistics by Statista, there were 41.19 million active internet users in South Africa and there were 28 million internet users who were active on social media, which is approximately 46 percent of the total population. Females between 35 to 44 years accounted for 7.2% of social media use while males accounted for 7.5%.
Here is a list of the 5 most popular social media platforms in Africa according to Statcounter:
- Facebook – 86.55%
- YouTube – 7.14%
- Twitter – 2.76%
- Instagram – 1.7%
- Pinterest – 1.56%
An Affordable Medium of Communication
Among many things that have made social media popular and rise to the top is top is that it is affordable compared to making phone calls and using Short Message Service (SMS). Many social media platforms will allow you to send large files and media for fewer data bundles, which could cost you loads of airtime when using Multimedia Messaging Service (MMS).
Facebook Messenger is probably one of the most convenient and affordable private messaging platforms with so many cool features that allow users to have seamless conversations with close friends and family.
One of the reasons Facebook takes the number one spot in Africa is that when users have run out of data bundles the platform allows its users to enjoy posts on a 20 megabit free reserve. Although this means that users will not get to see media content like pictures and videos, many still appreciate and enjoy this option. The platform currently has over 2 billion users globally.
Easy to use
Social media platforms are no longer a mystery, even to older generations because developers make sure that they make easy-to-use platforms. I mean, what could be difficult about scrolling up and down the feeds or clicking here and there for actions? Obviously, the old fellas are hesitant at first but eventually, they get the hang of it and are always glued to their screens. An example of an easy-to-use platform is TikTok, which is also slowly making its way to the top.
With the world going digital, social media platforms continue to dominate the world including an underserved continent like Africa.
By Zintle Nkohla
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