According to Hitwise, which has been tracking Google+ usage since the beginning (just desktop, “public” usage), Google+ traffic has grown 1269% since it became open to public about a week ago. Before that, it was getting only 1.1 million million visits per week, and that traffic has now spiked to 15 million visits per week. That kind of growth is mind-blowing to say the least.

Once again, that traffic is without the mobile traffic from Android and iOS apps, and it’s also without the traffic from the black Google bar, which is actually used quite a lot by many people, because it’s much easier to check out your notifications there, instead of going to the Google+ site  for every notification you get.

As you can see in the image above, even that desktop traffic is still almost half the amount of traffic that Twitter is getting. Twitter needed a few years to get to that number, Google+ got it in just 3 months.

But wait, there’s more. Paul Allen has been monitoring and calculating the number of users of Google+ from day one, and so far his numbers have been extremely accurate. Basically a couple of days after he said Google+ achieved 10 million users, Google came out and confirmed it. Now he’s saying that from his calculations, Google+ should now have around 50 million users, which is almost double the number it had last time before it opened up to public (27 million).

Twitter has recently announced that it has 100 million active users, and 200 million registered accounts. So then Google+ would also have about half of Twitter’s active users number and a quarter of Twitter’s “registered accounts” number. But being so easy to make a Twitter account, I figure many of those have been abandoned a long time ago by people who couldn’t figure how to use Twitter properly, or didn’t find a need for it.

Regardless of the specifics, what’s important to remember is that Google+ has already gained many millions of users in just a few short months, when other networks needed several years to gain that many. And my guess is this is not where it ends, but it’s just the beginning for Google+. They’ve just started integrating it into some of Google’s other products and services, and we’re probably going to see a lot more advanced stuff in the next year or so.

I bet deeper integration with Android Ice Cream Sandwich is coming as well. If nothing else, they could just put the Google+ app on the main homescreen of all ICS (and beyond) phones, and people would see it there all the time unless they decide to delete it from the main homescreen. But that would surely give Google+ another huge boost when a lot of “normal” people would finally decide to try it out and play around with it.

Another way to do that is to try and get everyone you know on it, so it doesn’t suffer so much from the chicken and egg problem.

[Sources: Hitwise, Paul Allen]