For another year in a row, TikTok was the most used app by children and teenagers during the day, even more than YouTube. According to app usage research children and teens worldwide in 2022, younger audiences (ages 4 to 18) started watching more TikTok than YouTube on average, and TikTok’s numbers continue to grow.
In June 2020, TikTok overtook YouTube for the first time: according to new data from parental control software maker Qustodio, kids spend an average of 82 minutes a day on TikTok compared to 75 minutes on YouTube.
According to the company, the gap between the two increased last year, as the average daily use of TikTok by children in 2022 increased to 107 minutes, 60% more than the time they spent watching video content on YouTube (67 minutes).
TikTok not only topped other video apps such as Netflix (48 minutes) and Disney+ (40 minutes) in average daily usage, but also surpassed other social apps including Snapchat (72 minutes), Instagram (45 minutes), Facebook (20 minutes), Pinterest (16 minutes) and Twitter (10 minutes), among audiences under the age of 18.
As the U.S. moves to ban TikTok on college campuses and in government, the addictive app’s video content was watched an average of 113 minutes per day in that market, compared to 77 minutes per day on YouTube, 52 minutes on Netflix, 90 minutes on Snapchat and 20 minutes on Pinterest.
However, there is good news for YouTube. The study found that the average daily time spent on YouTube increased by 20% compared to last year, reaching 67 minutes – the highest since Qustodio began reporting annual trends.
YouTube also gained a significant share of the global market last year, with 63% of children worldwide using the service in 2022. The report also found that 60% of children in the US watch YouTube, compared to 67% in the UK, 73% in Spain and 58% in Australia. The second most popular video service was Netflix, with 39% popularity among children worldwide.
Overall, in 2022, children under 18 managed to increase their viewing of video content by 18%, spending an average of 45 minutes per day on services such as YouTube, Netflix, Disney+, Prime Video and others.
Other winners include Netflix and Amazon Prime Video, which grew in popularity by 7% and 10%, respectively. But in terms of average daily minutes spent, Prime Video dropped 15% year-over-year to 34 minutes. Disney+ was reduced by the same percentage, dropping from 47 minutes per day to 40 minutes in 2022. Twitch also suffered last year, with only 11% of under-18s tuning in, compared to 16% in 2021.
The rise in popularity of TikTok among the younger generation has forced Big Tech giants to combat this threat with their own short videos. YouTube Shorts is YouTube’s solution to this problem. This month, Google announced that Shorts crossed the 50 billion daily views mark. Instagram, of course, tried to implement Reels into its experience — and received some backlash for the changes. Instagram CEO Adam Mosseri even admitted earlier this year that the platform was forcing “too many videos” on users.
It is not clear whether such embedding of videos on Instagram has paid off for a young audience. According to Qustodio’s analysis, the app fell out of the top five social networks in the US, UK and Australia among users under 18 years of age. However, it still ranks 5th in the world, behind TikTok, Facebook (38% of kids use it worldwide), Snapchat and Pinterest.
While the software company chose to analyze Roblox among other video games, it’s also worth noting that the game is a social network of sorts — and a hugely popular place among kids around the world. The gaming platform was popular among 59% of children worldwide, and the average daily time spent on it increased by 4% compared to last year to 180 minutes. That’s more than any other game, including the #2 game, Minecraft (up 37% to 48 minutes), Clash Royale, Brawl Stars, Clash of Clans, and What Would You Choose.
Qustodio’s full report also analyzes other app trends, including Twitter’s 7% increase in popularity worldwide, which also led to its first appearance on the list of the world’s most parentally blocked apps in 2022. The report also delved into education app usage, with Google Classroom leading on school devices and Duolingo remaining the most popular app on personal devices. The report also looks at communication, where WhatsApp and Discord have overtaken Messages as the most popular way to communicate with friends, although more minutes are spent on Zoom each day.