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Twitter founder: Twitter will hit one billion member mark

Twitter is set to attract millions more members in coming months, said Twitter co-founder Evan Williams.

By Matthew Shaer / October 12, 2010

Twitter is growing fast. But could Twitter really hit the one billion member mark anytime soon?

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Just over a month ago, Twitter co-founder Evan Williams took to the Twitter blog to tout majors gains in both membership and traffic, both of which Williams chalked up to an improved Twitter mobile platform. According to Williams, the number of mobile Twitter users is up 62 percent since this spring, when the company officially began releasing mobile apps for the iPhone, Android, and iPhone operating systems.

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Meanwhile, Williams added, Twitter now had 145 million members worldwide, a fairly staggering number for such a young social media platform. Now, Williams, who recently stepped down as CEO of the site, is saying that Twitter will someday attract upwards of a billion members. Speaking at an event moderated by BusinessWeek, Williams said Twitter would reach that landmark – although Mashable reports that Williams didn't lay out a timeline.

Of course, Williams isn't the only Web guru to predict that his site would eventually attract 1 billion members. Earlier this year, Mark Zuckerberg, the CEO of Facebook – and the subject of the new biopic "The Social Network" – said the platform he helped created would eventually swell to 1 billion members. The Facebook community currently counts upwards of 500 million members among its ranks.

But back at Mashable, blogger Ben Parr says it would be a mistake to assume that Twitter and Facebook are locked in a race for the 1-billion-member trophy.

"[Williams's] comments likely refer to his team's belief that Facebook and Twitter are fundamentally different services with fundamentally different goals. Tonight's conversation was entirely about Twitter as an information network, something that Twitter likes to emphasize anytime they're compared to Facebook," Parr wrote.

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