The UN's International Telecommunications Union has announced that the number of Internet users worldwide is now greater than two billion
-- or nearly one in three humans. In line with the group's previous growth estimates, that figure is up from 1.86 billion a year earlier and 250 million at the start of 2000. The number of wired broadband users exceeded 500 million for the first time in 2010 with 555 million subscriptions and mobile broadband subscriptions grew to 940 million.
Some 57% of those online are in a developing country. Asia Pacific alone added more than 100 million Internet users in 2010, bringing the region's connected users to 857 million. Europe had the highest density of Web-goers, ahead of the Americas, Arab nations and former Soviet states -- though the latter two have experienced the highest growth. Arab countries now have 88 million folks online, while the Commonwealth of Independent States reached 127 million.
Perhaps even more surprising is the current number of cell phone users. According to the ITU, mobile subscriptions have exploded to five billion, up from only 500 million at the start of 2000. Conversely, fixed landline telephone subscriptions fell for the fourth consecutive year to 1.2 billion. It's worth noting that some people have multiple cell phone plans so each subscription doesn't equal one person, but that's still a massive number any way you look at it.