Instagram Reaches 400 Million Users

Courtesy of Instagram

Taylor Swift is the most followed celebrity on the Facebook-owned app, with 47.6 million followers.

Over the last five years, Instagram has morphed from a novelty photo-sharing service into the app-du-jour for celebrities, sports stars, influencers and everyday folks. On Tuesday, the Facebook-owned app revealed that that growth has propelled it to 400 million users, up from 300 million in December.

Much of Instagram's growth has happened internationally. The company reports that 75 percent of its users live outside of the United States, and more than half of its 100 million new users live in Europe and Asia. The countries that added the most Instagrammers during the last nine months were Brazil, Japan and Indonesia.

In the time since Instagram last gave an update about the size of its user base, several celebrities have joined the service, including David Beckham and Caitlyn Jenner. The app also has crowned a new queen. Kim Kardashian West overtook Beyonce as the most followed person on Instagram in August, but she soon was surpassed by Taylor Swift, who boasts 47.6 million followers.

Instagram is larger than Twitter, which reported in July that it had an average of 316 million monthly active users during the second quarter of the year, but it remains smaller than Facebook-owned WhatsApp, which has 900 million users, and the site's Messenger app, which has 700 million users. Facebook, meanwhile, had 1.49 billion monthly active users during the second quarter of the year and, in August, announced that for the first time ever, 1 billion people used Facebook in a single day.

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