TikTok says it has over 1 billion users

By: AFP      Published: 11:16 PM, 27 Sep, 2021
TikTok says it has over 1 billion users

TikTok said Monday it now has more than a billion active users, just four years after the hugely popular video-sharing app was launched by Chinese group ByteDance.

Already popular before the coronavirus pandemic -- mainly due to its viral choreography set to pop songs -- TikTok received a major boost amid lockdowns, school closures and telecommuting.

The video platform has gained more than 300 million users since July 2020, the last time the company had reported user numbers.

Initially built on the principle of 15-second videos, the platform raised the time limit to three minutes in early July to attract a wider audience and compete with YouTube.

For its part, the Google subsidiary launched YouTube Shorts, deployed in more than 100 countries in mid-July, to compete with TikTok in the short format segment.

The ByteDance subsidiary, whose equivalent in China is called Douyin, nevertheless remains well behind YouTube, which claimed 2.3 billion monthly active users in 2020. 

TikTok is now looking to monetize more of its platform's traffic, something it was slow to do in its early days. 

The social network accelerated into advertising last year and launched a new feature in late August 2021 that allows its users to directly purchase products offered on the platform by content creators.