“New data from research firm comScore Inc. shows that Google+ users are signing up — but then not doing much there,” reports the Wall Street Journal. Google+ has racked up 90 million registered users, but the average computer user only spends 3 minutes per month on the service. Those same users are spending nearly 7 hours per month with Facebook, 140 TIMES more minutes than the time-spent with Google+.
There are two ways to look at those numbers, I suppose. One, lots of people barely use Google+. Or two, some people love Google+ deeply and use it all the time, but they make up a small group so their power (as measured in minutes per internet user) is diluted by a large denominator. There are some snarky critics who believe the latter; in fact they suspect the small group of Google+ users is pretty much just people who work at Google.
Come on, that just can’t be true! The global internet population is about 2.3 billion. On average they each spent 7 hours last month with Facebook, but since only 845 million of them are actually using Facebook, that means the average Facebook user spent more like 19 hours Facebooking.
If, on average, each of the 2.3 billion internet users also spent 3 minutes with Google+ last month, that’s 6.9 billion minutes, or 115,000 hours. Divide that by Google’s 33,000 employees, and you get 3,485 hours per month per person. Which is pretty darn good, considering there are only 720 hours in a month. This suggests that the snarks are at least a little bit wrong. But if they’re not, and every single Google employee is using Google+ more than 24 hours a day, then Google has a giant hit on its hands — if only they can get more people to use it as enthusiastically as Googlers do.