Google + 20 million

It may have taken forever to appear, be its maker's third attempt to beat off Facebook, and have a stupid name you can't actually Google, but it seems Google + is off to a flying start. Less than two weeks after it launched as a private beta, Google's much-hyped new social network (sorry, suite of social networking tools) is reportedly on the verge of registering its 20 millionth user. That's a big beta.

You still can't sign up to Google + without an invite, but enough of those are flying around that Ancestry.com founder and all-round clever bod Paul Allen reckons the social nework will sign up its 20 millionth user at some point today. As CNET explains, 'He achieved his prediction by tracking numbers of surnames signing up to the service, allowing him to measure user growth over time. There's a whole load of maths in use here which we won't pretend to understand, but Allen claims his prediction is accurate, if rather low-budget.'

Of course, explosive growth doesn't always equal success. Users who flock in to see the new thing don't always stay - look at Google Wave. But our instinct tells us Google+ might just find a niche alongside Facebook and Twitter. Time will tell. In the meantime, have you got your invite yet?

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