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Opera Software: Location is Everything Social-Network Popularity
IT News Online Staff
2012-12-03

Social networks are now a staple of the Web, but that doesn't mean all online users are connected. What social network you connect to is very much tied to where you live, and few countries or regions have extensive overlap in social-network usage.


In this State of the Mobile Web report, five social networks were examined across more than 190 countries and regions to map out the usage worldwide. With several social networks to choose from, many users pick one and stick with it, according to statistics from web-browser maker Opera Software.

There are a few exceptions to this rule. Users in Estonia seem to balance the use of western social networks such as Facebook and Twitter more evenly with the Russian-based social networks like Odnoklassniki and vKontakte. More that 30% of Estonian Opera Mini users visit Facebook at least once per month, while 7.8% visit Odnoklassniki, and 18% visit vKontakte in the same time period. Elsewhere in the world, this division is not so balanced.

In terms of total user numbers, and not only percentage of users, Asian countries are on top of the list for Facebook (Indonesia, India, Nigeria, Mexico, Vietnam, South Africa, Brazil, Bangladesh, Russia, Turkey). The top country list for Twitter is remarkably similar: Indonesia on top, followed by India, Nigeria, Brazil, Russia, Mexico, South Africa, Turkey, Kenya and the Philippines.

Some interesting finds from the SMW report:
- Citizens of Macao are, by far, the most active Facebook users percentage-wise, while Indonesia has the highest number of unique Facebook users on Opera Mini.
- For Twitter, the inhabitants of Paraguay and Japan are the most active users, while Indonesia still takes first place in terms of unique users.
- India is home to the 2nd largest user base of Facebook and twitter, in terms of total user numbers.
- Odnoklassniki and vKontakte are some of the largest non-western networks, having more than 10% of the user base in 12 and 10 countries, respectively
- Weibo is mostly used inside China only, but there is some usage in east Asian region and the Americas.

In the SMW report, available at opera.com/smw, an interactive table allows you to examine the social-network usage among 190+ countries and regions, for Facebook, Twitter, vKontakte, Odnoklassniki and Weibo. Play around with the numbers and check out social-network usage in your region. The data is gathered by looking at usage of top-level domains among the Opera Mini user base.

Opera Mini is the preferred app for millions of users appreciating its compression technology, so up to 90% less traffic is downloaded. This also means faster browsing on slow networks. Opera Mini is available from m.opera.com or from any app store.

In October 2012, there were over 215 million Opera Mini and Opera Mobile users; more than 21 million of them were Opera Mobile users on smartphones, and the rest were Opera Mini users. Compared to October 2011, Opera Mini and Opera Mobile usage combined grew more than 33% year over year.




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