When the Internet was launched in 1984, it was never intended to be as heavily used as it is today. Back then, the Internet linked together a thousand hosts at university and corporate labs, but then it grew steadily to 50 million users by 1998. An important part of the Internet, and the part that most people recognize as the Internet, is the World Wide Web.
Growth in Websites
In 1993, the World Wide Web was made up of only 130 websites, as the infographic shows. By 2012, however, there were over 634 million websites on the Web, and the number is growing daily. During 2012, 51 million new websites came to life, an average of almost 140,000 new websites each day.
These websites are all hosted on web servers, of course. While Apache is used by the vast majority of websites at 62.8%, Nginx and Microsoft IIS hold respectable minorities of hosting at 18.2% and 14.4% of the websites on the World Wide Web, respectively.
The Explosion of Search
Along with the growth in the number of websites has come a tremendous growth in the number of web searches. Google saw only 9,800 queries per day in 1998, for 3.6 million searches annually. By 2012, though, the search engine was averaging 3 billion search queries daily, with 1.2 trillion searches conducted in 2012.
Social Media Blows Up
A growing segment of the World Wide Web lies in social media. Some social media names have come and then gone the way of the dodo bird, but many have managed to stick it out and flourish. Facebook, for example, was launched to a small audience in 2004, but by 2012 had grown to over 1 billion users. Twitter and LindIn, likewise, have seen exponential growth over the few years since the social media sites were launched.
As more and more uses are found for the World Wide Web, it’s growth will continue. We can already do shopping on the Internet for books, electronics, and other non-perishable goods. What does the future hold? With the growth of the Internet that you can see in the infographic, it should not be too surprising that Amazon.com and startup Instacart, see us ordering our groceries for home delivery through a web site sometime in the future, rather than going to the grocery store.
This infographic, created by WhoIsHostingThis, outlines the explosive growth of web usage from its meager beginnings to its massive presence today.