Google+ has been live for just 2 weeks, and in that time only those with access to an invite have managed to sign up. Even then, the invites didn’t always work due to overloading of the system, and Google seems to have underestimated the popularity of its new social network by not allocating enough disk space for notifications. Users have also responded by already asking for the 5,000 circle limit to be lifted.
Is Google+ popular then? A most definite yes, but how popular has it become in a couple of weeks? Paul Allen, founder of Ancestry.com and serial entrepreneur, has done a summary analysis and guesstimated the userbase has already gone past 10 million. He’s also predicting 20 million users by the time we reach the weekend.
Allen used a combination of surnames and population data from the U.S. Census Bureau to initially come up with a rough estimate on Google+ user numbers. He then later updated it to include international users too. For the moment, it’s the best guess we have until Google decides to share official numbers.
Allen’s analysis started on July 2nd and claimed 410,773 users across the U.S. He then expanded his survey internationally and by July 4th the U.S. userbase was up to 515,933 with a further 1,226,136 users outside the U.S. giving a total of 1,742,069 users. By July 10th, just 6 days later, that total had jumped to 7.3 million before passing 10 million yesterday, July 11th.
If that growth continues at the same rate then Allen predicts Google will have more than 20 million Google+ users before the week is over, and then the social network will be well on its way to reaching 100 million.
Although Facebook’s 750 million still looks a long way off, Mark Zuckerberg must be sweating a little at the pace of Google+.