IB TIMES - Feb 15 - Facebook said its number of active users in Brazil had nearly tripled in 2011, finally placing it ahead of Google Inc's Orkut service as the No. 1 social network in the country. Much of the credit for that may belong to Google, analysts say. While a growing economy and easier credit gave Brazilians the ability to purchase computers and broadband connections, Google's Orkut gave them a reason to do so in the first place. "Until Orkut came along in 2004, Internet use in Brazil was stagnant," said analyst José Calazans of market research firm IBOPEnielsen in Sao Paulo. Now many of those people are moving to Facebook." Orkut's failure to innovate in line with users' expectations created an opportunity for Facebook to step in, offering new apps and games, as well as the ability to connect with people beyond Brazil.
by Asher Levine
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