Report: Half the global population uses internet, 3.2b users active on social media

80% of the world’s internet users are active on social media

More than half the global population is online now. The Digital in 2018 report from social media management platform Hootsuite and socially led creative agency We Are Social finds that of the 7.593 billion people in the world, 4.021 billion are internet users.

This statistic gets better when Australia’s internet activity is put under the microscope.

According to the report released this morning, 90% of the Australian population uses the internet. Out of the 21.74 million Australians online, 17 million are active social media users – that is two-thirds of the population. Collectively, almost 100 minutes are spent on social platforms each day. Globally, there are 3.2 billion active social media users – up 13% in the last 12 months.

In Australia, more than 19 million people use mobile to access the internet. Australians spend 80% more time on the internet than watching television.

We Are Social’s global consultant Simon Kemp predicted audiovisual content will be more preferred in the future over text.

He said: “With four billion people now online, connectivity is already a way of life for most of us. However, as internet companies strive to serve the next billion users, we’ll see important changes in digital over the coming months. Audiovisual content will take priority over text – especially in social media and messaging apps – while voice commands and cameras will replace keyboards as our primary means of input. Social relationships and online communities will evolve to accommodate these new ways for people to interact with each other. This will result in rich new experiences for all of us, but businesses need to start preparing for these changes today.”

Globally, internet users are projected to spend a combined total of one billion years online in 2018, of which 325 million years will be spent on social media.

Hootsuite CMO Penny Wilson said: “The Digital in 2018 report highlights the continuing growth of the internet and social media to individuals and businesses around the world. This dynamic has forever altered the customer journey as consumers and B2B professionals increasingly conduct research, make buying decisions, seek support, and recommend brands online. To achieve competitive advantage, all executives must dive deep into digital now, meeting their customers where they are to best market, sell, and serve them.”

The seventh annual Digital in 2018 report represents 239 countries and territories.

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