Instagram expanded its gap with South Korea’s top search engine Naver in terms of hours used, data showed on Sunday, amid the growing popularity of short video clips shared on the social media service operated by Meta Platforms.

According to data compiled by industry tracker Wiseapp, South Korean users spent a combined 389 million hours on Instagram, making it the third-most used app in the country in May, beating Naver by 46.41 million hours.

Instagram outstripped Naver by 13.86 million hours to become the third-most used smartphone app here for the first time in April, reports Yonhap news agency.

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Video-sharing service YouTube stood as the most used app for the month with 1.8 billion hours, followed by the mobile messenger KakaoTalk with 565 million hours, the data also showed.

Instagram was also more frequently used by users than Naver in May. Wiseapp said South Korean users activated Instagram on their smartphones 1.78 billion times, while Naver was operated 1.43 billion times.

KakaoTalk held a comparable figure of a whopping 78.7 billion activations, the data showed.

Experts say the growing presence of Instagram aligns with the popularity of its “Reels” launched in 2021, which refers to short videos shared on the platform.

Naver kicked off a similar service dubbed Clip in August last year, although it has not yet made a significant impact on the app’s hours used or frequency of activation.

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