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Google+ Passes 100 Million Users

I'm doing some analysis this morning on the growth rates of Twitter, Pinterest, Google+, Foursquare and Facebook.

The big news today is that Facebook may file its S-1. I'm monitoring sec.gov, but haven't seen anything surface yet. When it happens, it should show up with this link/query: http://1.usa.gov/AcHUXi

Meanwhile, I think it's noteworthy that Google+ membership has grown more than 10% since Jan. 19th when Larry Page announced 90 million users. I have them at 100.8 million users by the end of the day. They have been growing by more than 750,000 new users per day since the 19th, based on analysis of users with hundreds of different surnames. If that rate holds steady, Google+ will end the year with 345 million users. But as I have said before, Google has many dials and levers to use this year to increase signups and usage, including its Android 4.0 rollout. I stand by my prediction of at least 400 million users by the end of 2012.

Here is my earlier detailed analysis of growth prospects for Google+ in 2012: http://bit.ly/zkAgER

It will be fascinating today, or this week, or whenever Facebook actually files, to see if they will announce something startling like 1 billion active users (have they been sandbagging?) or if they, for the first time ever, announce how many total user accounts they have. (They have always announced "active users", which means accounts that have been used in the past 30 days.)

It will also be interesting to see if Facebook delivers some other kind of "IPO Surprise," speculation that I read about yesterday in the Chicago Sun Times. Will they somehow carve out shares for Facebook users? Will Mark Zuckerberg do something unique to make his mark in the annals of tech IPOs, in addition to this being the largest internet IPO ever? Here's the interesting speculation: http://bit.ly/A2cosc
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55 comments
 
Great news on G+ growth figures. With 400 million by the end of 2012 you will be approaching 40% of facebook users within a year and half of launch (depending on FB number announced and their growth rate). Still that is a huge increase in users in a year.
 
Let's just see some things that could make it only 17 public hangouts +Eduardo Temes.

What percent of that 100million actually are in a place they can do a Hangout?
What percent of that 100million actually has a camera?
What percent of that 100million actually do Hangouts?
What percent of that 100million actually list them as public not private?

That 100million becomes really small really fast. And I can't wait til Google+ replaces Facebook.
 
Fantastic analysis. Looking forward to following you on all things IPO in the near future.
 
G+ is the only serious threat FB has faced - and they have the leverage, user base and goodwill to capitalise on that and dent FB use seriously.

FB will always have its place as a closed user group interface, as opposed to G+ allowing users to roam free and connect with whom they wish - the problem is notwithstanding Fb having its own place, they will soon have shareholders to please.

Those (institutional) shareholders will not be satisfied with stagnant or less than impressive figures - they have been fed an ever rising user base. A threat from G+, coupled with FBs own ability to self-sabotage with enforced use of Timeline etc - makes the possibility of a FB price plunge very possible in the few quarters following launch.
 
I don't want to be the skeleton at the feast but how many of that new 10 million are yet more 'ghost accounts' people who sign-up only to find that G+ still provides a much more difficult (forget richer or in-depth) user experience then say Fb or Twitter? Word around the camp fire that I heard was that over 63% of users used G+ as a one-time deal only before departing leaving their profiles up but unused.

No doubt I'll be joining the Shot Messengers Club for this
 
ha ha, the fact that you use twitter +Vincent Murphy makes us google plus fans pity you. Twitter composed of 90 percent spam bots and the other 8 percent full of celebrity bs is enough of a punishment for someone.
 
+Vincent Murphy I don't think you'll be the shot messenger, but where did you hear this "word around the camp fire"? Also I find it interesting that you think G+ is a more difficult user experience. I am finding the people that have come over (completely low tech FB junkies) have found it easy to use with a tip or two and are currently super frustrated with timeline and FB.
 
+Paul Allen Is that estimate mainly on the basis of public posts or does it include a fairly reasonable & accurate estimate of all private posts too?
 
Try this query in a normal Google Search Window (not the G+ search!) :

site:plus.google.com -inurl:posts -inurl:about -inurl:b

Shortcut for the lazy: http://goo.gl/D661R

It results with 98.4 Million, been using this since the last august, always returned results within the 5% of the official announced numbers, IMHO pretty good estimation where G+ is heading! :-)
 
+Sandeep Deshpande

The Content of this particular post was amended by +Vincent Murphy to remove all the hasty, vitriolic bile it originally contained, this has now been replaced by the mental image of a puppy snuggled up with a lamb that is now in your mind.

Thank You
 
+Vincent Murphy - My experience is that Facebook is ghastly and difficult to work with. Coming to Google+ felt natural, and without it constantly trying to force something down my throat.
 
+Sandeep Deshpande +Vincent Murphy - No, Vincent's got a point - there's a host of profiles on here that are 'vacant'.

Twitter and FB both have their place, and it is very different from G+.

Twitter is a bot-ridden semi-social marketers paradise - everybody's trying to sell you something. But...breaking news? They do it well (not as well as WE will at livemapp but hey!). Celeb junk? They do that well too.

And there's a market for that. Same as FB - what they do, they do, um, well-ish. But they have a strangle hold on the market and many of the younger users use it because....many of the younger users use it. Virtual circle.

G+ does have the power and reach to break that. We could easily see a tipping point of desertion from FB given the superiority of G+, functionality-wise. And they are adding to that weekly. FB add to theirs weakly.

So - yes, your point is valid that currently G+ may well have many vacant user profiles but what does that mean? That they have already reached those 100m people and that with time the unconverted early lookers may well come back.

That's not bad if we're honest, is it? 100m users in a few months!?

If I was Facebook, I would know this is the most serious threat out there at the moment and not be placated by figures of only 50 million of those being active users.
 
It would be nice to get some level of "active engagement" growth. There are probably different ways you could measure this...perhaps taking an aggregate of the top 100 followed on Google+ and looking at growth from that perspective. To follow someone you at least have to engage with Google+ once. Even better would be the % of users who clicked on their "+You" button in a given week/month, but obviously only the folks at Google know that. It might be a small percentage, but what you'd be looking for is growth, not the absolute number.
 
+Vincent Murphy I think you have that backwards. When they released the official announcement it was around 60 some percent of accounts use it on a daily basis. 80 some percent on a weekly.
 
+Vincent Murphy while Sandeep was tough on you at all. You are here criticizing G+ and he hacks back at you about Twitter with some valid concerns of his own (spam bots and celebrity drivel) I'd still like to hear where you are getting your 63% figure. If you are claiming this number you should be able to support it from somewhere.
 
Don't get me wrong - I'm a G+ fan boy of the first water and a passionate daily user of Hang-Outs. I do think the G+ has an image problem where from an outsiders POV it can look like a seriously evangelical church - all the 'First Generation' badges and some of the unceasing eulogising of G+ , Google and Google employees can makes it seem like the worlds biggest smoke ass blowing up competition.

...and +Sandeep Deshpande if you were being ironic I apologise and genuinely bow to your fine mastery of the art, I am but a rogue and peasant knave ;-)
 
No doubt that a lot of Google profiles do not use their access to G+, but checking a Google+ profile, you cannot tell if it is "vacant" or not. A long time ago, Google told that more than two thirds of the G+ sharing was private. That surely translates to a lot of users without any public activity, or very, very limited.
 
+Eduardo Temes I am not sure where you are going with what you are saying... I tried to explain to you that 100 million seems like a big number, but when you really get down to it that sample that you are getting is the people that meet lots and lots of criteria to match your idea of "engaged". A simple text message from 1000's of miles away is fine. But when it comes to actually talking to someone all the criteria have to match for you to talk to someone. When it comes to video that number gets even lower. How often do you ignore a phone call because you are engaged in doing something else? When a text can just be replied to at some point later? For instance me replying to your comment 20 minutes after you posted.
Irene S
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I'm not sure how meaningful the percentage increase is considering that anyone who signs up for a new Gmail account automatically gets signed up for Google+ whether they want to or not.
 
+Jared Hundrup I was hoping to protect my source and would want to see if he's happy revealing his identity before I went public with it , but I can say it was in a hang-out and the person is a bit of a G+ maven. +Johnnie Hougaard Nielsen I think the idea that there are huge swathes of people using G+ to communicate but are doing it privately is a bit of a reach, sure I have no way of proving it but it sounds suspect, using that logic Google (or anyone else) could claim to have any number they like. I can only go on the fact that I see an awful lot of profiles with virtually no circles, no posts, no filled in profiles and in the last few days even a drop off in Hang-out use. Circumstantial I know but most people I interact with seem to say the same (and I've hardly had to bully any of them into agreeing with me) ;-)
 
+Vincent Murphy I'm not into analyzing on vague terms like "huge swathes", but my personal observation is that I see many users having 3-digit circling counts (both ways), and a "vacant-looking" public posting record. This is based on occasionally taking a look at circling suggestions, but also on checking definitely active users who've plussed a comment of mine.

I'm confident that a "non-minor" part of G+ users are not much into public sharing, and this fits nicely with the Google statement about the major part of sharing being done in private.
 
how many are active??? Out of all my fb friends (995) only 43 are on G+. None of them are active on it except me!! Said that, I come here once a day. I meet an tech guy or a VC, I look them up on Linkedin then fb then G+. The rest, FB or Linkedin first and never here.
 
btw that is me obviously...if G+ has 10M active member it is a hell of a result already but 100M,who are you kidding!
 
First they ignore you, then they say you have few users, then they say user count is not a relevant metric, then you win :-)
 
A Crunchie... and 100 Million Users. BAM!!!
 
Does anybody have an estimate of the number of FB signups per day? It seems 1-3 years ago was when they were growing the fastest.
 
It may be due to now allowing teens to join the network.
 
I'm looking forward to curling up with the S-1 and comparing it to Google's latest 10K and 10Q. Shopping for adds to my daughter's Roth IRA.
 
1-g+ just lifted itz age limit to 13
2-existing google users are forced to create g+ accounts
3-nearly 700,000 android phones are sold in a day...!!


Well...if fb doesn't come up with a great mobile platform with htc..they're cooked in a couple of yearz...
 
Great news! Now I'm waiting for the moment when Google + in Poland will use ten times as many people in relation to what is now:)
 
that's good news wile typing this text on my android tablet :)
 
Hey..i was wondering if any of you guyz could edit your profile via ur android app...can't seem to get it right here...!!!
 
+Claude Rieth with your given command, it now displays 99.3M users. That is increase of 900,000 new user signed-up in a single day. Amazing.
 
the G+ in Portugal is still little used, much the fault of the Portuguese who have an aversion to new things. I hope this will change, because I think the G + is superior to the Facebook, the less my friends, few moving from Facebook to G +. Congratulations for the excellent work.
 
Keivon: My posts are private, except to family, friends, colleagues, with the exception of comments like these, so that is a valuable insight.

For me, Facebook is all about being seen, building the most possible "friends," and passing time "keeping up" with buddies.

Google+, for me, is all about learning and gaining insight from selected other member/contributors. I suspect the demographics of the population of Google+ and Facebook users will be much different.

I'd expect a higher socio-economic status for the Google+, which will attract a different advertiser possibly willing to pay more. This is comparable to the difference between FB and Linked In.

-- Doug Simpson, Connecticut
 
+Claude Rieth Eliminating users that haven't filled out their profile might provide a more accurate measure of active users:

site:plus.google.com -inurl:posts -inurl:about -inurl:photos -"has not filled out their profile yet"

Gets: 54,300,000 from google.com, but 68,900,000 from google.co.uk, and 55,100,000 from google.com.hk for example.

The results are much lower if we try to distinguish Pages from humans:

site:plus.google.com -inurl:posts -inurl:about -inurl:photos -"has not filled out their profile yet" -"to add this page to a circle"

Gets: 3,150,000 from google.com ... so it may be too exclusive somehow. However, trying to force it to give only Page type users with:

site:plus.google.com -inurl:posts -inurl:about -inurl:photos -"has not filled out their profile yet" +"to add this page to a circle"

Gets: 25,500 from google.com which means we can't account for some 51 million users.

Another interesting search is:

site:plus.google.com -inurl:posts -inurl:about -inurl:photos "circles 1..9999999999"

Which tries to find active users based on their having added or been added to a circle... and made that figure public. This gets 11,800,000 results from google.com .
 
Raw 'subscriber' counts may not tell us much about the relative long-term value of FB v. Google+ v. LinkedIn. Each has a different targeted demographic, which should affect advertiser's expectations.
 
why do you only have 220 likes then? Users is one thing... How about publishing how many active and how much ppl are posting... I have great expectations from G+.... I really love it... But I cannot get my friends to join this.
 
is that 100 million users include users that list themselves as private?
 
I wish everyone would just start using G+. Google can analyse data and put it to use better than FB any day of the week - that is why people use their products - not just because everyone else is.
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