In a press release issued today, comScore breaks down the time spent online globally by properties, with Microsoft sites leading the way with nearly 15 percent of all time spent online (out of some 27 billion hours per month!):
In September 2009, nearly 27 billion hours were spent on the Internet globally by a record online population of 1.2 billion Internet users age 15 and older. Microsoft Sites accounted for 14.5 percent of total minutes spent online in September, making it the most engaging global property, with Microsoft’s Windows Live Messenger representing nearly 70 percent of time spent on the property during the month. Google Sites captured 9.3 percent of total minutes (2.5 billion hours), with YouTube accounting for nearly half of total time spent (1.2 billion hours) at the property. Yahoo! Sites ranked as the third most engaging Web property at 1.7 billion hours, followed by Facebook.com at 1.4 billion hours. Facebook’s share of attention reached 5.1 percent in September, an increase of 2.9 percentage points from the previous year, as its continued growth in popularity precipitated this surge in share.
So a little quick math, and 70% of 3,92 billion gives Windows Live Messenger some 2,744 billion hours of time spent online worldwide in a month: that’s more than all time spend online on Google, or Yahoo, or Facebook sites, wow!
For those of us in the US this may come as quite a surprise, as Messenger is not quite as popular as it is elsewhere, but looking at the comScore breakdown of numbers by region you can see where Microsoft (and Messenger) are most popular: