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eMarketer: 88% of UK under 4s watch online video

February 9, 2017

In its latest UK social network usage forecast, eMarketer expects digital video viewing from the under 4s to help drive up Internet usage this year. It also expects Facebook and Twitter usage to increase.

Report highlights include:

Internet Usage

  • eMarketer has increased its estimate for Internet usage, in 2017 54.4 million people, or 82 per cent of the population will be online, a growth of 2.1 per cent
  • Younger audiences, particularly in the 0-4 category are driving up Internet usage, in 2017 eMarketer predicts that 20.9 per cent of under 4s will be online.

Digital Video:

  • Unsurprisingly digital videos are the most popular online activity for the youngest internet users in the UK – this year 88.6 per cent of internet users aged under 4 will be tuning in.
  • Buoyed by the growth in younger age categories, overall video numbers are up, in 2017 eMarketer estimates that 43.2 million people, equating to 79.4 per cent of Internet users will be watching online videos.

Digital Audio Listeners

  • Streaming and downloading is growing rapidly, and the move towards 4G networks, which will allow music and videos to be delivered over mobile networks more quickly, will speed this up.
  • In 2017, more than half (52.0 per cent) of the population, or 34.5 million people, will listen to music or other audio content digitally this year.

Social Network Usage

  • Overall Social Network Users are up, this year 55.1 per cent of the population, or 36.6 million people will use social networks, a growth of 3.4 per cent.


  • eMarketer’s estimates for UK Facebook usage are slightly up since our last forecast driven by slight increases come in 18-34 age group
  • In 2017, 32.7 million people in the UK will use Facebook in total, a jump of 2.8 per cent over last year.
  • This year, 30.3 million people in the UK will access Facebook via a mobile phone


  • eMarketer’s projections on UK Twitter usage have been lowered as a result of drops in almost all age groups.
  • In 2017 there will be 12.53 million people in the UK using Twitter, a yearly growth of 2.5 per cent
  • This year 12.1 million people will use Twitter via a mobile phone


  • This year, snapchat will be used by 13.6 million people, representing 37.1 per cent of all social network users.


  • Instagram will be used by 14.4 million people this year, a growth of 18.2 per cent
  • In 2017, almost two-fifths of all social network users will be logging onto Instagram.

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