Number of monthly active users on WhatsApp in India 2013-2017
The rise of digital India
With a mobile friendly approach to the internet, the use of social media applications was correspondingly high in India. By 2021, studies had found that around 29 percent of the total population would be active social media users. Facebook, YouTube and WhatsApp were ranked among the most popular social networking sites in the country based on usage reach.
Social media transcends socio-economic boundaries
The high penetration of the mobile messaging application came as no surprise considering that the use of the messaging app had been increasing rapidly over the last few years. Although most WhatsApp users came from urban areas, rural areas recorded an increasing share of the app adoption. This adoption spread was also true across income groups. With increasing social media usage, there was also rising issues with the believability of information shared over these platforms, leading to the increase in fake news and cybercrime.