Snapchat, the social network popular with young smartphone users, said Thursday it has 500 million monthly active users amid surging growth in many parts of the world.
The platform, which has expanded its offerings beyond its original disappearing messages, had not previously announced a figure for monthly active users, but had said last month it had 280 million daily active users.
"We now reach over 500 million monthly active users, and nearly one of every two smartphone users in the United States is on Snapchat," chief executive Evan Spiegel said in opening parent firm Snap's partner summit.
"In the US, France, UK, Australia, and the Netherlands, Snapchat is becoming an indispensable part of people's lives, reaching 90 percent of 13- to 24-year-olds, and 75 percent of 13- to 34-year-olds."
Spiegel said Snapchat has seen sizzling growth over the past year with many consumers locked down due to the coronavirus pandemic, with a doubling of daily active users in India over the past five quarters.
"Our community outside of North America and Europe is growing rapidly," he said.
"In fact, roughly 40 percent of our community is now located outside of North America and Europe."
Known for its disappearing messages, Snapchat has expanded partnerships with a range of media companies including games, news, entertainment and sports snippets.
It is also known for its augmented reality features allowing users to share their own content and shop while virtually trying on items.
The company on Thursday unveiled a number of new partnerships including with the dating app Bumble, allowing users to share their content with Snapchat augmented reality technology.