If you’re unfamiliar with the term, an internet minute refers to what happens online in the span of 60 seconds. You can apply this to anything like tweets shared on Twitter, videos posted on YouTube, etc.
Below, I’ll list out some of the more interesting data I found about people’s activities during an internet minute. This data is accurate as of 2022, so it’s fairly new.
|Activity||Amounts Per Minute|
|Emails sent||231 million|
|Videos viewed on TikTok||167 million|
|Cryptocurrency purchased (USD)||$90.2 million|
|Texts sent||16 million|
|Messages sent on Facebook||9 million|
|Products bought online||6 million|
|Searches conducted on Google||5.9 million|
|Snaps shared on Snapchat||2.43 million|
|Content shared on Facebook||1.7 million|
|Swipes on Tinder||1.1 million|
|Hours streamed||1 million|
|Amazon revenue earned||$955,517|
|Apple revenue earned||$848,090|
|Messages sent on Discord||668,000|
|Tweets sent on Twitter||575,000|
|Comments posted on Facebook||510,000|
|Content viewed on Netflix||452,000|
|USD spent on Amazon||$443,000|
|USD sent on Venmo||$437,600|
|Alphabet (Google) revenue earned||$433,014|
|Tweets shared on Twitter||347,200|
|Microsoft revenue earned||$327,823|
|USD spent on Amazon||$283,320|
|Facebook revenue earned||$213,628|
|Hours spent in Zoom meetings||104,600|
|Tesla revenue earned||$81,766|
|USD spent on DoorDash||$76,400|
|Photos shared on Instagram||66,000|
|USD spent on online events||$66,000|
|Netflix revenue earned||$50,566|
|Users active on LinkedIn||20,800|
|Hours of video uploaded to YouTube||500|
What we get from this, aside from the fact that Amazon is literally filthy rich and people send a lot of emails, is that the internet is always awake.
Something always happens somewhere, all the time, and there’s no stopping it. Save for a nuclear attack that wipes off all the servers everywhere, and there’s no more electricity; nothing can stop the internet ever again.
The internet has become ever so present in our lives, and it’s safe to say that the lack of it would literally cripple entire industries. The world would cease to function in many ways without this interconnected network.
Suffice it to say that millions of things are taking place every minute on the internet, and it’s only getting more intense as time passes by.
According to Data Report, approximately 64.6% of the world’s population had access to the internet in January 2013. That’s about 5.158 billion people. Moreover, in the last year, almost 100 million people gained access to the internet.
While it’s unrealistic to expect all of the world’s population to have access to the internet, those figures are slowly rising.
If we’re still at it, I’ll also include a chart with the number of internet users from 1990 to 2023, courtesy of Data Reportal.
Number of Internet Users Worldwide Per Year 1990-2023
The amount of actions performed online per internet minute is directly proportional to the number of internet users at any given period. The more users, the more recorded actions per internet minute.
Below, I’ve prepared a chart showing the number of internet users worldwide over the years.
|Year||Number of Internet Users||Revolutionary Discovery|
|1990||2.6 million users||Tim Berners-Lee developed HTML (HyperText Markup Language)|
|1991||4.2 million users (the first website appeared on 6 August 1991)||CERN launched the World Wide Web publicly|
|1992||6.8 million users||The first video and audio content are sent online|
|1993||9.8 million users||There are over 600 websites on the internet, and the Mosaic browser has been launched|
|1994||20.1 million users||Microsoft launched a web browser for Windows 95, and Yahoo! is created|
|1995||38.7 million users||Amazon, Craigslist, and eBay go online, and Prodigy, America Online, and Compuserve offer internet access. Also, Match.com, the first online dating site, goes live|
|1996||72 million users||Microsoft and Netscape enter the so-called “browser war,” and CNET buys tv.com. “The Dancing Baby” becomes the first viral video on the internet|
|1997||116 million users||Netflix is founded, Netscape announces that its browser is free|
|1998||180 million users||Google (the search engine) goes live, and IPv6 (Internet Protocol version 6) is born|
|1999||272 million users||Peer-to-peer file sharing (piracy) is born, and AOL buys Netscape|
|2000||396 million users||Yahoo! and eBay suffer from DDoS attacks as the dot-com bubble bursts, and AOL merges with Time Warner|
|2001||499 million users||Napster is shut down by a federal judge|
|2002||668 million users|
|2003||761 million users||Skype, MySpace, and Safari go live, and the SQL Slammer worm spreads to the entire world in 10 minutes. WordPress is launched|
|2004||899 million users||Facebook and Mozilla Firefox appear|
|2005||1.004 billion users||YouTube and Reddit are launched|
|2006||1.116 billion users||AOL starts offering most of its services for free and relies on ad revenue. The Internet Governance Forum hosts their first meeting. Twitter is also launched, and the first tweet is sent|
|2007||1.288 billion users|
|2008||1.460 billion users|
|2009||1.655 billion users|
|2010||1.908 billion users||Facebook reaches 400 million active users, and Instagram and Pinterest go live|
|2011||2.130 billion users||Facebook and Twitter get entangled (and play a big role) in the Middle East revolts|
|2012||2.355 billion users||Barrack Obama’s administration successfully stopped the Stop Online Piracy Act and Protected Intellectual Property Act to save user-generated content|
|2013||2.534 billion users||Edward Snowden reveals that the NSA has a monitoring program that can tap the communications of anyone in the US. Also, 51%+ of American adults claim that they bank online|
|2014||2.8 billion users|
|2015||3.004 billion users||Instagram reaches 400 million users|
|2016||3.423 billion users||Google Assistant is revealed to the world|
|2017||3.679 billion users|
|2018||3.977 billion users||IoT (Internet of Things) devices go through a massive boom|
|2019||4.335 billion users||5G is launched|
|2020||4.627 billion users|
|2021||4.962 billion users||Over 4.66 billion people are connected to the internet|
|2022||5.060 billion users||Low-Earth orbit satellite internet becomes a reality with SpaceX’s Starlink|
|2023||5.158 billion users|
By cross-comparing this chart with the appearance of every revolutionary element of the internet, you’ll quickly see massive increases in internet users.
For instance, 1993 marks the first big leap in internet users, from 9.8 million to 20.1, a 105% increase.
This happened largely because Mosaic, the world’s first web browser, was launched in 1993. That same year, the European Organization for Nuclear Research made its website public and free for everyone.
Once the first websites appeared, the train had left the station, and there was no turning back. The internet would keep evolving, and everyone would get in on the fun.
Take a look at the following extrapolations from the chart above as well:
- The internet reached 100+ million users in 7 years from the moment HTML was created in 1990 (a 4,361% increase)
- It only took a little over a year (from 1997 to the beginning of 1999) for the internet to have over 200 million users
- The internet reached 1 billion users in 2005, in only 15 years since Tim-Berners Lee created HTML (a 38,361% increase)
- The 2-billion mark was reached 6 years later, in 2011, a 113% increase, and the 3-billion mark was reached 4 years later
- In total, from 1990 to 2023, a 33-year period, the number of internet users grew from 2.6 million to 5.158 billion, a 192,284% increase.
In 2023, we have over 5,158 billion people connected to the internet, and as I said previously, the number is only going up the more time passes.
We also have to take into consideration that the world’s population is in constant growth, with an estimated 8 billion people in November 2020.
Naturally, more and more people will get their hands on advice that has access to the internet.
What’s the End-Game of the Internet?
The internet exists to make our lives easier and connect people from all around the world instantly. The benefits far outweigh the flaws (arguing with people online and wasting time?).
The future looks ever-brighter for the Age of the Internet, with brand-new technologies to make our lives more comfortable.
That’s about all I can say about the optic. Stay tuned for other interesting analyses of online platforms and phenomena!
- Statista – Media Usage in an Internet Minute as of April 2022
- Visual Capitalist – From Amazon to Zoom: What Happens in an Internet Minute in 2021?
- Data Reportal – Digital Around the World
- Live Science – Internet History Timeline: ARPANET to the World Wide Web