Probably finite.
The persistence of a number (A031346) is the number of times you need to multiply the digits together before reaching a single digit.
From David A. Corneth, Sep 23 2016: (Start)
For n > 1, the digit 0 doesn't occur. Therefore the digit 1 doesn't occur and all terms have digits in nondecreasing order.
a(n) consists of at most one three and at most one two but not both. If they contain both, they could be replaced with a single digit 6 giving a lesser number. Two threes can be replaced with a 9. Similarily, there's at most one four and one six but not both. Two sixes can be replaced with 49. A four and a six can be replaced with a three and an eight. For n > 2, an even number and a five don't occur together.
Summarizing, a term a(n) for n > 2 consists of 7's, 8's and 9's with a prefix of one of the following sets of digits: {{}, {2}, {3}, {4}, {6}, {2,6}, {3,5}, {5, 5,...}} [Amended by Kohei Sakai, May 27 2017]
No more up to 10^200. (End)
From Benjamin Chaffin, Sep 29 2016: (Start)
Let p(n) be the product of the digits of n, and P(n) be the multiplicative persistence of n. Any p(n) > 1 must have only prime factors from one of the two sets {2,3,7} or {3,5,7}. The following are true of all p(n) < 10^20000:
The largest p(n) with P(p(n))=10 is 2^4 * 3^20 * 7^5. The only other such p(n) known is p(a(11))=2^19 * 3^4 * 7^6.
The largest p(n) with P(p(n))=9 is 2^33 * 3^3 (12 digits).
The largest p(n) with P(p(n))=8 is 2^9 * 3^5 * 7^8 (12 digits).
The largest p(n) with P(p(n))=7 is 2^24 * 3^18 (16 digits).
The largest p(n) with P(p(n))=6 is 2^24 * 3^6 * 7^6 (16 digits).
The largest p(n) with P(p(n))=5 is 2^35 * 3^2 * 7^6 (17 digits).
The largest p(n) with P(p(n))=4 is 2^59 * 3^5 * 7^2 (22 digits).
The largest p(n) with P(p(n))=3 is 2^4 * 3^17 * 7^38 (42 digits).
The largest p(n) with P(p(n))=2 is 2^25 * 3^227 * 7^28 (140 digits).
All p(n) between 10^140 and 10^20000 have a persistence of 1, meaning they contain a 0 digit. (End)
From A.H.M. Smeets, Nov 16 2018: (Start)
Let p_10(n) be the product of the digits of n in base 10. We can define an equivalence relation DP_10 on n by n DP_10 m if and only if p_10(n) = p_10(m); the name DP_b for the equivalence relation stands for "digits product for representation in base b". A number n is called the class representative number of class n/DP_10 if and only if p_10(n) = p_10(m), m >= n; i.e., if it is the smallest number of that class; it is also called the reduced number.
For any multiplicative persistence, except multiplicative persistence 2, the set of class representative numbers with that multiplicative persistence is conjectured to be finite.
Each class representative number represents an infinite set of numbers with the same multiplicative persistence.
For multiplicative persistence 2, only the set of class representative numbers which end in the digit zero is infinite. The table of numbers of class representative numbers of different multiplicative persistence (mp) is given by:
final digit
mp total 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9
====================================================
0 10 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1
1 10 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1
2 inf inf 0 4 0 1 1 5 0 7 0
3 12199 12161 0 8 0 3 3 8 0 16 0
4 408 342 0 14 0 5 4 19 0 24 0
5 151 88 0 9 0 1 3 37 0 13 0
6 41 24 0 1 0 0 0 14 0 2 0
7 13 9 0 0 0 0 0 4 0 0 0
8 8 7 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 0
9 5 5 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
10 2 2 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
11 2 2 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
It is observed from this that for the reduced numbers with multiplicative persistence 1, the primes 11, 13, 17 and 19, will not occur in any trajectory of another (larger) number; i.e., all numbers represented by the reduced numbers 11, 13, 17 and 19 have a prime factor of at least 11 (conjectured from the observations).
Example for numbers represented by the reduced number 19: 91 = 7*13, 133 = 7*19, 313 is prime, 331 is prime, 119 = 7*17, 191 is prime, 911 is prime, 1133 = 11*103, 1313 = 13*101, 1331 = 11^3, 3113 = 11*283, 3131 = 31*101 and 3311 = 7*11*43.
In fact all trajectories can be projected to a trajectory in one of the ten trees with reduced numbers with roots 0..9, and the numbers represented by the reduced number of each leaf have a prime factor of at least 11 (as conjectured from the observations).
Example of the trajectory of 277777788888899 (see A121111) in the tree of reduced numbers (the unreduced numbers are given between brackets): 277777788888899 > 3778888999 (4996238671872) > 26888999 (438939648) > 2677889 (4478976) > 68889 (338688) > 6788 (27648) > 2688 (2688) > 678 (768) > 69 (336) > 45 (54) > 10 (20) > 0. (End)
