Like? Facebook now has over a billion active users

Like it, love it or hate it, there’s no denying the extraordinary impact that Facebook has had on the web, and on society as a whole. The positive and negative aspects of that impact are best left to be debated another time – on the Neowin Forums perhaps – but whether you regard social networks as a force for good or a disastrous influence tearing apart the fabric of society, one thing is clear: Facebook is here to stay.

As if to underline this fact, Facebook’s founder and CEO, Mark Zuckerberg confirmed that the site now has over one billion active users every month. The passing of this milestone is a remarkable achievement in just eight years since the site first launched; perhaps even more astonishing is that it has taken just two years for the company to double its user base from 500m in July 2010.

To mark the one billion user milestone, Facebook made available several statistics about the network and its users. Since the site launched in 2004, there have been:

  • 1.13 trillion ‘likes’
  • 219 billion photos stored
  • 140.3 billion instances of adding/accepting a friend
  • 17 billion location check-ins

In the here and now, with one billion users:

  • There are 600 million mobile users
  • The median age of a Facebook user is 22
  • The top three countries are Brazil, India and Indonesia

Facebook has been working hard to establish itself in developing markets, but is still poorly represented in much of Africa and Asia. Socialbakers.com created this map-graphic showing the percentage of the total population of each continent that is now signed up to Facebook:

Clearly, there’s still plenty more of the world left for Facebook to conquer – but the number of users alone isn’t the company’s only key metric for success. Facebook has been struggling for some time to monetise its huge and growing user base, and its failure to do so in significant volumes has led to a dramatic fall in its share price since its IPO earlier this year. The latest effort to convert users into cash was revealed yesterday, as the company hopes that individual users (as opposed to companies) might pay $7 USD to promote their posts on friends’ news feeds.

But while the company might, secretly, view each of its users as nothing more than walking piggy banks just waiting to unleash the cash within, it seems that Facebook views itself as something quite different because, as this video tells us, “chairs are like Facebook”:

Source: BBC News

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33 Comments

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I don´t use sites requiring a FB login, and I don´t let comments in those sites, so sorry for them. FB can´t make me do something I don´t want to.

Facebook's nice to have around but not essential. Wonder how many Facebook addicts will be ready to shell out cash if they decide to become a paid subscription service after getting users hooked on?

have to wonder how many of them are multiple profiles or fake users .... we've already had the fake likes debate ....

Tai said,
have to wonder how many of them are multiple profiles or fake users .... we've already had the fake likes debate ....

Facebook last said 8.7% of their accounts are fake, that was in August meaning there were 872 Million real accounts that had logged on in the past month.

Gaffney said,

Facebook last said 8.7% of their accounts are fake, that was in August meaning there were 872 Million real accounts that had logged on in the past month.

The 8.7% figure is probably much higher, like on just about every other website with users, but I guess we'll never know the true figure unless its independently verified ...

This is the point that FB needs to change their business model from explosive growth to sustaining their user base. If they think they can get 2 billion users by 2020 (just making that up as an example), I think they're sorely mistaken. More and more people are upset by unnecessary feature "enhancements" and privacy shortcomings. At some point their user base won't be able to grow at an impressive rate since everyone in the developed world will already use FB or actively choose not to use it, and the rest of the world has no need for it (until, you know, they get broadband internet in the 3rd world, which should be a few months after they get running water).

Without impressive growth year after year, their advertisers will start to pull ads, stock price will (continue) to fall, etc. By keeping users happy (and sustaining 1 billion active users), advertisers will have a much more stable platform to market to (happy, established users) rather than a company with tons of users but tons of turnover.

neufuse said,
Chairs are like facebook? what they are there and no one is using it? gawd bad Clint Eastwood jokes brewing

Facebook is like a lawn that even Clint Eastwood can't make you get off of.

Well before Facebook was around, we dutchies had hyves. Which is basically a dutch version that released the same year as FB. Was allot worse, but it took a few years before FB overtook hyves in holland.
So to us it wasn't that revolutionary considering we already had something similar.

I got sucked into FB due to everyone stopped using MSN, skype or IRC and just where online on FB ~.~
Ah well, the info FB got on me is useless anyways considering 90%+ what I post is complete junk =p

I was literally about to leave Facebook today until I realized my Spotify requires me to use it to login. Facebook is so integrated into everything that even if I wanted to leave; which I do, I couldn't.

FACEBOOK OWNS OUR SOULS.

Zeikku said,
I was literally about to leave Facebook today until I realized my Spotify requires me to use it to login. Facebook is so integrated into everything that even if I wanted to leave; which I do, I couldn't.

FACEBOOK OWNS OUR SOULS.


this, i do hate that more and more sites require a fb login instead of just an ordinary sign up. getting sick of it, then again i choose not to use those kinda sites.

Memnochxx said,
You don't need a facebook account to use Spotify.

I do, you see, at the time; I was stupid and waited for spotify to receive facebook integration. So my account was created by Facebook in a sense, which means even if I were to deactivate Facebook, every time I'd sign in to Spotify my Facebook account would reactivate. Only way to do it is to create another mail and account for it, which I really do not want to have to do. I'd rather just login with Facebook.

Memnochxx said,
You don't need a facebook account to use Spotify.

Old users might not, but after a deal, new accounts can only be created via facebook, and closing facebook means loosing spotify.

Memnochxx said,
You don't need a facebook account to use Spotify.

Old users might not, but after a deal, new accounts can only be created via facebook, and closing facebook means loosing spotify.

Zeikku said,
I was literally about to leave Facebook today until I realized my Spotify requires me to use it to login. Facebook is so integrated into everything that even if I wanted to leave; which I do, I couldn't.

FACEBOOK OWNS OUR SOULS.

Not mine; I looked to join spotify but when I noted the mandatory FB I chenged my mind.

Shadowzz said,

this, i do hate that more and more sites require a fb login instead of just an ordinary sign up. getting sick of it, then again i choose not to use those kinda sites.

Same here; sites will not force me to join something I do not care about. Such sites will just miss more and more potential customers.

Zeikku said,
I was literally about to leave Facebook today until I realized my Spotify requires me to use it to login. Facebook is so integrated into everything that even if I wanted to leave; which I do, I couldn't.

FACEBOOK OWNS OUR SOULS.

Leave ? I don't think you can leave facebook everywhere you go you will be bombarded with like buttons, widgits, tracking domains and even twats iframe'ing their facebook page onto other websites.

The web is plastered with this crap, Blocking all their domains with an edge firewall ftw

MrXXIV said,
Imagine owning a page with almost a billion likes.

Hope that person doesn't wear a Like-A-Hug vest or they'd be squashed into paste.