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Facebook's Messenger Kids: Will It Succeed Where SnapKidz Failed?

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Facebook's Messenger Kids: Will It Succeed Where SnapKidz Failed?

Facebook Inc (NASDAQ: FB) dominates the grown-up texting market with WhatsApp and Messenger, but that’s apparently not enough.

Starting Monday, the firm will expand its total addressable market through the industry’s yet-untapped consumer demographic: adolescents.

U.S. children between 6 and 12 years old can download Messenger Kids to their iPad, iPod or iPhone to text and video chat with family and friends. The ad-free app is activated and contacts are controlled through parents’ Facebook accounts, a factor that allows the company to work around legal limits prohibiting under-13 platform use.

The app features photo filters and stickers competitive with Snap Inc (NYSE: SNAP)’s SnapChat, which failed to capture Facebook’s target demo in 2013 with its now-defunct SnapKidz.

Studies suggest the move could widely expand Facebook’s user base, though.

Surveys offer a U.S. range of average first-phone ages between 6 and 10.3 years. According to Nielsen, 81 percent of children with phones use their devices for communication and 45 percent received their own service lines between 10 and 12. As of 2013, The NPD Group found 51 percent of children are using smart devices.

While currently limited to Apple Inc. (NASDAQ: AAPL)’s iOS devices, the app will expand to Alphabet Inc (NASDAQ: GOOGL)’s Google Play Store and Amazon.com, Inc. (NASDAQ: AMZN)’s App Store in the coming months.

Related Links: 

Texting Turns 25: A Look At Its Transformative Role In US Commerce

What's Fueling Facebook's Growth?

Photo courtesy of Facebook.

 

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