By 2018, 40 percent of Twitter's registered users will be Asian, according to a new report from eMarketer. An estimated 160 million of Twitter's 400 million users will be in the emerging markets of Asia, and that growth could be even greater if China removes a ban on the social network in the next four years.
When looking at Twitter's active users, the Asia-Pacific region already accounts for a greater percentage of users than North America and Western Europe, according to eMarketer. However, the gap between Asia and other regional markets will continue to grow as more people get online in countries like Indonesia and Japan. Additional foreign markets in the Middle East and Africa are also projected to show steady growth from 2014 to 2018.
Tapping into Markets
Technology companies, whether they are Internet-based like Twitter or hardware-based like Apple, have recently been trying to tap into the Asian market because of the high concentration of customers in countries like China. Twitter is faced with more obstacles than usual because of harsh censorship laws concerning all social networks in China, but in other Asian countries, eMarketer expects the network to grow much faster than it has been.
"In 2014, the Asia-Pacific region will account for 32.8% of all Twitter users, compared with 23.7% in North America, eMarketer estimates, and by 2018, Asia-Pacific will more than double North America's share, breaking the 40% mark in terms of worldwide market share," says eMarketer's report. Included in the Asia-Pacific region are countries like Indonesia, Malaysia and the Philippines, all of which are experiencing an increase in per capita wealth, making them more attractive markets for any technology company.
Even within the region, eMarketer says it is easy to see which markets will continue to exhibit steady growth. The two areas that are expected to grow in size and affect Twitter the most during the next four years are India and Indonesia.
Overall, Twitter is going to experience double-digit growth into the future, according to eMarketer. That level of growth is much different from the 10 percent or lower growth rate that Facebook has been posting since 2012. Based upon eMarketer's data , it is possible to see when Twitter will likely level off its growth in the same way that Facebook has. By 2018, growth will fall to 10.7 percent, compared with 30.4 percent in 2013. This means that by 2020, Twitter will no longer be undergoing double-digit growth and will therefore take much longer to reach the 500-million-user milestone.
While Facebook has been unique in its ability to reach well more than 1 billion users and hundreds of millions of active daily users, Twitter will still attain a significant user base. Much of Twitter's growth potential seems to be fueled by country growth rates as high as 50 percent throughout Asia.