TikTok owner ByteDance sees rapid uptake of new social media app Lemon8

by | Apr 12, 2023 | News

ByteDance, the Chinese company behind mobile first phenomenon TikTok, is making waves again – thanks to the rapid growth of its new social media app Lemon8.

Described as artsy and aspirational, the new content-sharing platform has racked up around 17 million downloads since it was first launched in early 2020, with a large percentage of those in Japan. However, it has really captured headlines in the last few weeks following its launch in the US and UK. In just a few weeks, Lemon8 app downloads in the App Store have overtaken Pinterest, Tinder, and Zillow.

Early adopters of the platform, which allows users to share video and still images, compare it to Pinterest and Instagram. In terms of key content areas showing up on Lemon8, fashion, fitness, cooking, travel, health and beauty are all prominent at present, though this may change as the user base expand.

While Lemon8’s recent growth in the US is impressive, analysts are not convinced it will have the same impact as TikTok. Insider Intelligence principal analyst and social media commentator Jasmine Enberg says TikTok’s rapid growth was “partly due to one major factor, the pandemic”. According to Enberg, Lemon8 is a different app to TikTok. It’s less about entertainment – which we all needed during the pandemic.”

She also notes that ByteDance “spent aggressively to market TikTok to US consumers – we have yet to see that level of investment for Lemon8.”

The irony, of course, is that Lemon8 is taking off in the US just as Washington politicians mull over the possibility of banning TikTok. It’s possible that Lemon8’s Chinese ownership may also cause it problems as it seeks to establish itself.

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