The number of Snapchat app downloads for the first two months of the second quarter of 2017 went down by 22 percent compared to the same period last year. The social network's dismal performance for this quarter is in contrast to Snapchat's growth in the previous quarter, wherein app downloads were up by 6 percent. One of the major factors behind the massive decrease in app downloads is the substantial reduction in the number of iPhone users downloading the Snapchat app. Year-on-year, Snapchat saw a 40 percent decrease in app downloads among iOS users, which has long been the target audience of the said social network.
Recent efforts by Facebook and its subsidiary Instagram to replicate Snapchat's features likely contributed to the reduction of Snapchat app downloads. Instagram Stories, one of Facebook's efforts to compete with Snapchat, is now a considerable success as Instagram Stories now has more daily active users than Snapchat. The reduction in app downloads this quarter comes at a time of reduced ad spending as part of an overall seasonal ad market trend. Hence, the reduction in app downloads and the decrease in ad spending in the current quarter may have a substantial impact on the financial performance of the social network in the second quarter of the current fiscal year. Thus, it is not likely that there will be a substantial deviation from the disappointing financial results Snap Inc. reported in the previous quarter
In an effort to increase the number of active users, Snapchat is reportedly working to improve the performance of its Android application. Snapchat's Android app has long been suffering from lack of optimization, slow performance, and stability issues, resulting in a decreased user engagement among Snapchat users who own Android phones. Issues surrounding Snapchat's Android app also contributed to the company's poor user growth in markets outside the United States where Android is the dominant mobile OS. Given the dismal number of Snapchat app downloads among iOS users for this quarter, it is imperative for Snapchat to improve its Android app to not only increase user engagement but also increase the number of app downloads among the users of the world's most popular mobile OS.