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Snapchat on pace to overtake Facebook for video supremacy

Matt Kapko | Oct. 6, 2015
Two of today's most popular social networks are battling for video dominance, and although Snapchat's community is just a tenth of the size of Facebook's user base, the smaller app is poised to pass its larger rival in daily video views.

It's practically inevitable that a messaging service that lets users send videos directly to others, such as Snapchat, will outpace both Facebook and YouTube in daily views, according to Shafer.

"I also think that Facebook and YouTube likely don't care, as it's next to impossible to monetize private video messaging with standard pre-roll video ads," he says. "While Snapchat Discover is a very natural fit for the 10-second pre-roll ads that run on many videos, monetizing private video messages with any form of advertising will be very, very difficult to do without alienating users."

Race is on for social video dominance

Snapchat sits atop a wave of video momentum today, but Facebook saw even greater growth during the final four months of 2014, when its daily video views jumped from 1 billion in early September 2014 to 3 billion in January. And much of that growth occurred during the height of the ALS Association's wildly popular ice bucket challenge

In late May, Snapchat had approximately 100 million daily active users (DAU), according to an interview with CEO Spiegel at Re/code's Code Conference. Facebook reported 968 million DAUs in June. 

Facebook was the darling of social video during the latter half of last year and at the start of 2015, but Snapchat quickly caught up. In fact, the app is poised to overtake Facebook in daily video views before the end of the year — despite its community being just a fraction of the size of Facebook's user base.


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