Google (GOOG) on Thursday announced the latest numbers for its Google+ social network and described it as the “fastest-growing network” of all time. The Internet giant revealed that more than 500 million people have joined the social networking service since it launched a little over 14 months ago in September of 2011. Better yet, 235 million users are actively using Google+ features each month such as +1ing content and video chatting in hang outs, while 135 million are active in the actual service. The numbers are an increase from September of this year when Google revealed that 400 million people had joined the service and 100 million were active. In comparison, the company’s closest competitor in the social space, Facebook (FB), has more than 1 billion active monthly users.
Google also announced the launch of new Google+ Communities, a service which looks to bring like-minded individuals together through either public or private conversation pages.
“From photography to astronomy (and everything in between), Google+ has always been a place to crowd around common interests and meet new people,” the company wrote on its blog. “What’s been missing, however, are more permanent homes for all the stuff you love: the wonderful, the weird, and yes, even the things that are waaay out there. With Google+ Communities there’s now a gathering place for your passions.”
Google’s new Google+ Communities commercial follows below.