Google has just revealed a number of new Google+ stats on its blog, including that so far, more than 500 million people have upgraded (joined), 235 million are actively using Google+ features (+1′ing apps in Google Play, hanging out in Gmail, connecting with friends in Search), and 135 million are active in just the stream.
It’s important to note that while Google+ is far more than a social network, rather a social layer stretched atop Google, the number of users active in the stream, a mere 135 million, reflects the actual number of people using the service itself. As Google directly integrates Google+ across all of its services, its usage numbers are poised to grow across the board, but it’s still particularly interesting to see that 135 million, or just ~27% (135/500) of Google+ users are actually using the service proper.
Back at Google I/O in June, Google shared that Google+ had surpassed 250 million accounts, 150 million of which were active monthly. It’s likely that this previous 150 million stat reflects the usage of all Google+ features, and has grown to the 235 million number detailed above.
Today, Google also launched Google+ Communities, the service’s answer to Facebook Groups, which is aimed at helping you meet new people. The company also made good on its promise to continue development of Nik Software’s apps (after it acquired the company in September), today launching a new, free Android version of Snapseed, while making the existing iOS version completely free.