Messaging app Line's number of monthly active users flatlines

(Photo: Tech in Asia)
Messaging app Line's number of monthly active users flatlines

Line now has 220 million monthly active users, which is exactly the same as in the previous quarter, reports Tech in Asia

In its first earnings report since a bumper initial public offer (IPO) that saw it raise $1.1 billion and top a valuation of $9 billion, mobile messaging app Line is flatlining.

Line now has 220 million monthly active users, which is exactly the same as in the previous quarter.

The figure is barely up from the 212 million it had exactly a year ago.

Facebook Messenger and (Facebook-owned) WhatsApp, meanwhile, have soared from 900 million to beyond a billion active users in the same time period, signalling that Mark Zuckerberg’s tandem chat apps have rebel social networks in check.

The bad news for Line doesn’t stop there. The app is now more dependent on its four main markets – Japan, Taiwan, Thailand, and Indonesia – than ever before. That quartet now accounts for 74 per cent of Line’s active users, up from 65 per cent this time last year. Line’s big push to win over India in 2014 with TV ads and celebrity endorsements clearly didn’t work. India remains a Facebook nation.

And just forget about China.

Line’s stasis raises the spectre of it losing users by the time of its next earnings report in January.


Parent company Line Corp, the Japan-based spin-off of Korean web giant Naver, is already expanding its mobile empire on the back of the Line name with things like a news app and streaming music. If these can grow and attract new users even while the core social network itself fades away, the newly-IPO’d company can maintain traction and revenues.

Line also saw falling revenue for content such as mobile gaming, streaming music, and its manga app.


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