Rumors of Facebook’s demise (which I have admittedly helped circulate on occasion) may be somewhat exaggerated, judging by data showing that the social leviathan dominates mobile usage, with key engagement metrics still trending upwards.
According to a survey of 7,446 smartphone users ages 18-44 conducted by IDC and Facebook and published earlier this month, 70% check Facebook on their devices, with 61% saying the check it every day. On average smartphone users check Facebook “at least” 14 times a day, spending an average 32 minutes and 51 seconds per day on the site via their devices.
Separate data from comScore shows U.S. smartphone owners spending 23.6% of their time on the devices using Facebook apps. According to comScore, the number of mobile minutes spent per unique visitor per month reached 785 in February 2013, equaling 28 minutes per day, which roughly matches the CIO data cited above. The February figures are up from 435 mobile minutes per unique visitor in March 2012.
In terms of activities, the CIO study found that among smartphone owners who access Facebook on their mobile devices, 82% said they read their newsfeed, while 49% post comments on their friends’ status updates, and 38% post status updates of their own. A slightly smaller proportion, 33%, said they message friends directly on Facebook.
Returning to comScore’s data, Facebook’s total share of online minutes (on both desktop and mobile) increased from 12.7% in March 2012 to 14.8% in February 2013 -- not exactly an indicator of diminishing interest. It’s true that desktop engagement has continued to fall, declining from 391 minutes in March 2012 to 320 minutes in February 2013, but the increase in smartphone usage, cited above, would appear to more than offset this drop.