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This article was published on June 2, 2011

Who’s got the most to lose from Twitter’s new image sharing service?

Who’s got the most to lose from Twitter’s new image sharing service?

The announcement yesterday that Twitter is to launch its own photo sharing service sent shockwaves through the developer community. Aside from Photobucket, which won the gig to host images shared Twitter’s offering, the remainder of the image sharing services are suddenly left fearing for their futures.

So, who’s got the most to lose? In order to get some up-to-date figures, monitoring and analysis company Sysomos looked at all the tweets from Monday 30 May 2011 to look at the current state of the Twitter image sharing market.

As the chart below shows, according to Sysomos, Twitpic commands almost 50% of the market. Yfrog and Lockerz (which owns Plixi) take second and third places, with Instagram, Flickr, Mobypicture and other smaller players in the mobile photo market taking up the final few places.

Still, the size of the image sharing market as a whole is a relatively small segment of Twitter. Only 1.25% of tweets contained images, compared to 13.6%$ with other kind of link and 85.1% being free of links.

By our calculations, going from Twitter’s official figure from March this year of 140 million tweets being published per day on average,that makes around 1,750,000 images being shared on Twitter each day – and it’s likely to be quite a bit more than that by now, assuming overall growth in the number of tweets.

Of course, this is just a snapshot of one day and a look at data over a longer time may have produced slightly different results. Still, it’s clear that Twitter image sharing is a huge market. While some players, such as Instagram, have a niche to set them apart, it’s the services that simply let you post images easily to Twitter that need to be afraid – and they make up most of the current market.