Facebook Overtakes Orkut in India – Another Setback for Google

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Larry would be going through the sleepless nights these days for sure. Internet Giant Google’s social networking website Orkut has lost yet another turf to the surge of Facebook. India stands among very few countries where Orkut is still a champion in social networking despite of hard selling by other competitors like ibibo, Facebook.com, Fropper & Twitter. But now anymore.

As per the Comscore, a market research firm, says that Indian users are getting more fascinated towards Facebook due to which Orkut has lost its ground in India. According to comScore, Facebook grabbed the number one ranking in the social networking category for the first time in July with 20.9 million visitors, up 179 per cent versus year ago. Orkut registered a growth of only 16 per cent in the same time period.

“The social networking phenomenon continues to gain steam worldwide, and India represents one of the fastest growing markets at the moment,” says Will Hodgman, comScore executive vice president for the Asia-Pacific region. “Though Facebook has tripled its audience in the past year to pace the growth for the category, several other social networking sites have posted their own sizeable gains.”

On the other side Google is struggling badly to repeat its “search service” success for which company has been failed multiple times in recent past despite having heavy investments & many acquisitions. A recent death of “Google Wave” is an live example of such failure.

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However, many analyst feel the heat from the other side of the coin. There is a rumor that Google is focusing with its core towards new social networking website “Google Me“. Some of the recent developments by the company stamp these rumors also. A recent talks with Zygna, developers of online games for Facebook and others, and few recent acquisitions clearly indicates that company is going with great guns for its new social networking initiative. That may be the prime reason Google has lost its focus towards Orkut to avoid in-house competitor for its own upcoming social networking initiatives.

In July 2010, more than 33 million Internet users aged 15 and above visited social networking sites in India, representing 84 per cent of the total Internet audience. While India’s total Internet audience grew 13 per cent, social networking usage rose 43 per cent. This makes India the world’s seventh largest market for social networking. Only US, China, Germany, Russian Federation, Brazil and the UK rank above India. Amongst the top social networking sites, Twitter had the most impressive growth with 239 per cent increase in the number of visitors since July 2009

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