The Korea Herald


Korea’s social media penetration rate ranks third in world

By Shim Woo-hyun

Published : Sept. 7, 2020 - 16:23

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South Korea’s social media penetration rate has reached 87 percent, the third highest among nations around the globe, according to a local report Monday.

South Korea’s social media penetration rate as of the first quarter this year was 80 percent higher than the global average of 49 percent, according to the latest report by DMC media and Digieco, an economic research institute affiliated with KT.

The report, which quoted related data collected by We Are Social, added that the United Arab Emirates’ social media penetration in the first quarter was the highest with 99 percent, and Taiwan and South Korea followed with 88 percent and 87 percent, respectively.

Other nations in the top 10 included Singapore with 79 percent, Hong Kong with 78 percent, Argentina with 76 percent, New Zealand with 75 percent, Thailand with 75 percent and Sweden with 73 percent. The rate of China was 72 percent, and those of the US and Japan were 70 percent and 65 percent, respectively.

The number of social media users in Korea continues to increase, the report said. South Korea’s social media users as of March was 35.5 million, up by 15.2 percent on-year, the report quoted data collected by a local market research firm Mobile Index.

By application, Naver Band had the most monthly active users -- 16.9 million -- in South Korea as of June, followed by Instagram with 11 million and KakaoStory with 9.9 million, according to the report. Facebook reached 9.8 million.

Different age groups, however, showed different preferences to social media platforms.

Facebook was most favored by teens. The average monthly amount of teenage users of Facebook here reached 2.2 million during the first quarter this year, followed by Instagram with 1.9 million and Twitter with 0.8 million.

People in their 20s and 30s favored Instagram. Around 4.9 million people in their 20s used Instagram, while 4.4 million people in their 30s used the application.

Those in their 40s and 50s most frequently used Naver Band and KakaoStory, the report also showed. The average monthly users for both of the local social media platforms among those their 40s and 50s surpassed 10 million combined.

The average amount of time spent on Twitter by South Korean users each month reached 594 minutes, followed by Facebook with 567 minutes and Instagram with 441 minutes, the report also showed. 

By Shim Woo-hyun (