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694 Million Internet Users Worldwide, So Far

There are an estimated 694 million internet users worldwide, according to a report from Comscore World Metrix. The study reveals that the internet is truly expanding worldwide, with the U.S. representing less than 25 per cent of global internet users as of the end of March.

The 'major' Asian countries � China, Japan, Korea and India � currently represent almost 25 percent of the world's internet population, with 168.1 million users. Combined, these four countries have a larger internet user base than the U.S., which has 152 million users, the largest of any single country. China comes in second, with 74.7 million users, followed by Japan with 52.1 million.

The report also measured the average hours spent online per visitor during the month of March 2006. Somewhat surprisingly, Israel topped the list, with each user average 57.5 online hours per month, compared to the global average of 31.3 hours per month. South Korea and Taiwan came in at three and five, respectively, with 47.2 and 43.2 hours per month.

Though internet use is increasing in Asia, the region is not yet producing online content which globally competes with its U.S. and European counterparts. U.S. companies continue to dominate in terms of global page views. Wanadoo, at number 15, was the only non-US company to crack the global top 15 in terms of page views. For March 2006, MSN-Microsoft sites came in at number one, followed closely by Google and Yahoo.

The study was performed by Comscore World Metrix, which has representation from the countries that comprise 99 per cent of the world's internet population.

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