The new 2018 Global Digital suite of reports from We Are Social and Hootsuite reveals that there are now more than 4 billion people around the world using the internet.
Well over half of the world’s population is now online, with the latest data showing that nearly a quarter of a billion new users came online for the first time in 2017. Africa has seen the fastest growth rates, with the number of internet users across the continent increasing by more than 20 percent year-on-year.
Much of this year’s growth in internet users has been driven by more affordable smartphones and mobile data plans. More than 200 million people got their first mobile device in 2017, and two-thirds of the world’s 7.6 billion inhabitants now have a mobile phone.
More than half of the handsets in use today are ‘smart’ devices too, so it’s increasingly easy for people to enjoy a rich internet experience wherever they are.
Social media use continues to grow rapidly too, and the number of people using the top platform in each country has increased by almost 1 million new users every day during the past 12 months. More than 3 billion people around the world now use social media each month, with 9 in 10 of those users accessing their chosen platforms via mobile devices.
You’ll find the key insights from this year’s reports in our more detailed analysis below, but here are the essential headlines for digital in 2018:
The number of internet users in 2018 is 4.021 billion, up 7 percent year-on-year
The number of social media users in 2018 is 3.196 billion, up 13 percent year-on-year
The number of mobile phone users in 2018 is 5.135 billion, up 4 percent year-on-year