SOCIAL MEDIA has revolutionised communication in Rwanda. Millions of people, especially the youth are active on a bunch of social media platforms. With the outbreak of covid-19 pandemic however, digital life has never been more important as many adopt social media platforms as a part of their daily life. There are many social media platforms worldwide, but given how some evolve and their features, Rwandan youth have become more accustomed to some than others. The New Times traced some of the social media platforms commonly used by youths in Rwanda, basing on the followers, views, and activity. Snapchat The instant and video messaging app allows users to talk with friends, view live stories and explore news in discover, making it friendly for young people. With a lot of time on their hands, the youth are beginning to unleash their hidden talents like comedy, acting and singing, thanks to the app. One of the main reasons it is popular among its users is its privacy and streaks, as well as messaging through images. One can identify a screenshot or saved videos by another user. Snapchat is an American multimedia instant messaging app and service developed by Snap Inc., originally Snapchat Inc, founded in 2011 by Evan Spiegel, Reggie Brown, and Bobby Murphy. One of the principal features of Snapchat is that pictures and messages are usually only available for a short time before they become inaccessible to their recipients. Yves Shema, a youth based in Gisenyi, says he cannot spend two hours without opening Snapchat. Instagram Instagram, another photo and video sharing social networking service owned by Facebook, is among the most popular platforms among local users with a seven percent social media market share. The platform has grown and accelerated the merging of influencers and E-commerce among the youth. Shadyboo, a Rwandan socialite has the most followers on this platform is Shaddyboo, a lady with close to 1 million followers. According to Ritha Uwera, a media personality who currently runs Century Park’s social media, Instagram has also made a significant impact in advertising as it can promote products on a global scale. The prominence of Instagram in Rwanda can also be seen by how the pandemic has forced showbiz to shift to online. Most deejays and musicians took their entertainment shows to Instagram during the lockdown. “During the pandemic, social media entertained people. It was one of the few platforms that kept our jobs afloat. We even had different ways of earning money from those social media platforms” said Dj Diallo, a renowned Rwandan Deejay. Twitter Twitter, an American microblogging and social networking service, is a platform on which different users interact and post messages known as “tweets,” Sometimes, users retweet others’ tweets. The platform created in 2006 in the United States was mostly used by the older generation, but recently the youth have been more involved on Twitter and are using it as a way of expressing and sharing thoughts on different matters. Plus, Twitter is a pool of opportunities, as some of the youth said. “Twitter allows you to get in contact with people who can help in your business easily. It’s full of opportunities,” said Bazillia Maeva a Twitter user in Kigali. Facebook Since its launch in 2004, this social media giant has grown in leaps in bounds that it is currently the leading social media platform with 2.74 billion active users according to DreamGrow, an online source for social media and content marketing information. The social network has helped young people connect with their long lost friends, make new friends and advertise their services, making it a darling among young peers. YouTube According to Adobe Spark, an online and mobile design app, YouTube hails as the second most popular search engine in the world today, right behind its parent company, Google. Its ability to entertain while promoting businesses and generate income has made it one of the favourites in Rwanda. Rwandan video bloggers who cut across entertainment, travel, edutainment, expertise and advertising have sworn by this platform to take their outreach farther and make their work easier. TikTok TikTok was named the most downloaded app in 2020 with its stream of videos. This is quite obvious given how much Rwandans have become fond of it. While some people have fun watching these videos, many make names and money by entertaining their audience via TikTok. In an earlier interview with The New Times, a renowned TikToker Ravanelly Twahirwa said, TikTok videos gave him a chance to be recognized. “Through this platform, I signed many contracts with different companies like a language teaching school based in Kigali, Ahobite TV, and Sweet Addicts that offers cooking training, among others.” TikTok, known in China as Douyin, is a video-sharing-focused social networking service by Chinese company ByteDance. WhatsApp This famous application is the last but not least. Whatsapp is a Facebook-owned mobile messaging app that lets users send text and audio messages, make phone calls, and share information. Brian Acton and Jan Koum, according to Oberlo, founded WhatsApp in 2009. Their goal was to give people an alternative to SMS, which is a type of text messaging. Theyve been able to accomplish all of this and more. Because of its effectiveness, Whatsapp is a popular app among many people, particularly among the youth in Rwanda and worldwide. Whatsapp has recorded so far 13 million users worldwide in 2021, according to Sensor Tower. “Whatsapp is straightforward to use and provides cool features. Every time there’s a new WhatsApp version, we’re always expecting an innovation, and it’s always the case,” said Carine Saro, a WhatsApp user in Rwanda.