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China – biggest online population

Posted by Michael Bloch in ecommerce (Tuesday March 18, 2008 )

It appears that China now has the largest online population in the world after having reportedly bypassed the USA recently.

The news comes from research firm BDA. BDA based their findings on data from the China Internet Network Information Center released earlier this year that showed the total number of Internet users in China was around the 210 million mark by the end of 2007. By the end of last year, Nielsen/NetRatings estimated the United States internet population at 216 million.

Based on growth rates at the end of 2007 staying the same so far this year; Bin Liu, BDA’s Beijing-based Principal Analyst, is confident that China has now pulled well ahead of the USA.

Another record to tumble recently that is somewhat related to online business is in relation to the US economy – it’s lost the title of “world’s biggest” to the EU last week as the value of the dollar continues to plummet according to this article on Reuters.

If you’re based outside the USA, but derive your income mainly from that market in USD like I do; I’m sure the issue of the US dollar’s woes hasn’t escaped you. As this currency exchange graph shows; it’s been a long slow slide – back around 2001, one Aussie dollar was worth around 56c US. Now it’s worth around the 93c mark.

As far as I know, it’s been a generation since the US dollar was this weak. It can be a little disheartening at times to work just as hard for less or be treading water instead of pulling well ahead; but that’s the way the cookie crumbles – and I still can’t think of any other form of (legal) business that offers so much opportunity and flexibility for such little capital outlay than the online world.

Strong Euro, China becoming an online powerhouse, US economy weakening – while it may not be a sky-is-falling scenario; perhaps it’s time to spread our wings a little and look to focus more on other markets? It’s increasingly looking like the US is in for an even bumpier ride in the time ahead.


1 comment for China – biggest online population
  1. I feel Australia will have a bumpy ride too.
    With the middle class growing both in India and PRC at such a fast rate I believe Asia is a good bet.

    Comment by Ern — March 18, 2008 @ 5:36 am

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