Regions, users, actives numbers all up

The total land area of the public OpenSim grids increased this month, as did the number of registered users and active users.

OpenSim now has the equivalent of 56,933 standard regions, 521,735 total registered users and 33,707 active users on 313 different grids.

Kitely was the biggest gainer this month, with 312 new regions, making it the second-largest grid after OSgrid, which gained 95 new regions for a new total of 14,918 standard region equivalents.

(Hypergrid Business data.)

Last month’s dramatic drop was due to Virtual Worlds Grid removing a total land area of approximately 18,000 regions. (Hypergrid Business data.)

For those who are new readers, OpenSim is a free, open source virtual world platform that’s compatible with the Oculus Rift. It allows people with no technical skills to quickly and cheaply create virtual worlds, and then teleport to other virtual worlds. Those with technical skills can run OpenSim worlds on their own servers for free, while commercial hosting starts at less than $5 a region — compared to $300 a region for the same land in Second Life.

A list of hosting providers is here. Download the recommended Firestorm viewer here. And find out where to get content for your OpenSim world or region here.

Popularity

When it comes to general-purpose social grids, especially closed grids, the rule of thumb is: the busier, the better. People looking to make new friends look for grids that already have the most users. Merchants looking to sell content will go to the grids with the most potential customers. Event organizers looking for the biggest audience… you get the idea.

Metropolis gained the most new active users this month, at 247, followed by OSgrid at 129, and Island Oasis at 128.

InWorldz retained its spot as the single most popular grid. Despite a drop of 393 active users, it retains a significant lead over the next busiest grid.

Top ten most popular grids:

However, the hypergrid as a whole is beginning to function more and more like one large grid, with an increasing number of multi-grid events, communities, and groups.

Actives on closed and open grids Mar 2016

Active users on the hypergrid, InWorldz, and on other closed grids. (Hypergrid Business data.)

In fact, out of 33,707 active users this month, 25,434 — or 75 percent, a record high share — were on hypergrid-enabled grids. Many hypergrid-enabled grids report hypergrid visitors as part of their active user counts, so this number is not representative of the total number of individual people on the hypergrid. However, users who visit other closed grids create alts on those grids, so they are counted multiple times either way.

Of the 8,137 active users on closed grids, 6,216 — or 76 percent — were all on InWorldz. The 59 other closed grids had just 1,921 active users among them.

Closed grids do offer some benefits to their users. For example, schools might prefer to have closed grids to ensure the security and safety of their students. Grids serving marginalized or dissident groups in authoritarian countries might also prefer the safety of a closed grid. And grids offering proprietary role playing games, especially those who have invested in unique content, may be able to offer a better gaming experience as a closed grid.

Another benefit that closed grids may offer to OpenSim is that they can afford to spend more time and money on marketing, helping attract new users to the platform. InWorldz, for example, has historically seen high new user registration numbers. Meanwhile, surveys also show that InWorldz users visit other grids as well, making it a popular entry point for OpenSim.

However, this has recently changed. Filtering out for grids that have had the most registered users over the past few years shows that Kitely has actually supplanted InWorldz as the biggest draw of new registrations last summer.

New user registrations on InWorldz and Kitely.

New user registrations on InWorldz and Kitely.

Both grids typically report more than 1,000 new registrations each month, the only two grids to do so.

Transitions

The biggest change this month is that Linda Kellie’s Clutterfly grid has closed down, and its regions have moved to the Metropolis grid.

“We have decided that having a mini grid isn’t all it’s cracked up to be,” she said in a post late last month.

Clutterfly was picked as the favorite place for users to outfit their new avatars in a survey last month.

The new address is hypergrid.org:8002:Clutterfly Shopping.

The Clutterfly Shopping region, now on the Metropolis grid.

The Clutterfly Shopping region, now on the Metropolis grid.

We have eight new grids added to our database since this time last month, including Time Paradox, DreamWorldz, StarGazer Genesis, Virtual Hispano, Arrival Nation, My Virtual 3D Life, Activity Ds, and Sinful Grid.

The following 11 grids were marked as suspended this month: 4Play, Calbertville, Dovangel, German Grid, linkinulife, Meridian Grid, Morpheusgrid, OpenSim.ru, SLFDGrid, ThunderLife, and Utherworldz.

Grids that have been suspended for more than two months will be marked as closed. If your grid isn’t on the active grids list, and not on the suspended list, and is marked closed when it shouldn’t be, please let us know.

And if there’s a public grid we’re not tracking, please email us at [email protected]. There’s no centralized way to find OpenSim grids, so if you don’t tell us about it, and Google doesn’t alert us, we won’t know about it.

By “public,” we mean grids that allow hypergrid visitors, or have a website where people can register for or request accounts.

March Region Counts on the Top 40 Grids

The list below is a small subset of existing OpenSim grids. We are now tracking a total of 1,151 different publicly-accessible grids, 313 of which were active this month, and 235 of which published their statistics.

All region counts on this list are, whenever available, in terms of standard region equivalents. Active user counts include hypergrid visitors whenever possible.

Many school, company or personal grids do not publish their numbers.

The raw data for this month’s report is here. A list of all active grids is here.

maria@hypergridbusiness.com'

Maria Korolov

Maria Korolov is editor and publisher of Hypergrid Business. She has been a journalist for more than twenty years and has worked for the Chicago Tribune, Reuters, and Computerworld and has reported from over a dozen countries, including Russia and China.

  • Thanks for the stat Maria 🙂

  • So it looks like Island Oasis received a nice bump after enabling the hypergrid. Perhaps one of their spokespeople can speak to this more accurately.

    “Metropolis gained the most new active users this month, at 247, followed by OSgrid at 129, and Island Oasis at 128.”

    Since Metropolis Metaversum… naturally… had been running approximately around 3,000 a month in actives it appears most of its increase came from things related to Linda moving in there…time will tell.

    “InWorldz retained its spot as the single most popular grid. Despite a drop of 393 active users, it retains a significant lead over the next busiest grid.”

    For whatever the reason (and I am sure they have one), this represents a trend of theirs for some months now. These amounts can easily be correlated with a decent percentage increase of hypergrid connected places…not all though, I don’t think…but a decent enough amount, percentage wise, to show yet again the closed commercial sl clone business model continues to decline, while hypergrid enabled places grow.

    I personally think this is ok. While of course some content creators are denying themselves money by not using the Kitely market…it is a case of some of them not making themselves knowledgeable…that is ok also…there are plenty of creators currently in the Kitely market who, by being in on the uptick, make money and help the hyperverse with good and quality content.

    Content creators who are satisfied to make less money than they could otherwise is ok also.

    “Closed grids do offer some benefits to their users. For example, schools might prefer to have closed grids to ensure the security and safety of their students. Grids serving marginalized or dissident groups in authoritarian countries might also prefer the safety of a closed grid. And grids offering proprietary role playing games, especially those who have invested in unique content, may be able to offer a better gaming experience as a closed grid.”

    With that paragraph I see it as “closed” grids being ones who keep closed for the reasons mentioned, NOT, as may be implied in truth or wishes, using the sl clones but as mini-grids as is being done more and more frequently, e.g. Nara’s Nook uses one such service (http://www.narasnook.com/) and while also having the hypergrid enabled they can enjoy collaborating across grids and other personal simulator instances.

    Using one of the various host companies as noted above. http://www.hypergridbusiness.com/category/vendors/opensim-hosting-vendors/ but removing the sl clones and just looking at the land hosting companies this is easy to accomplish. With more technical knowledge one can run their own personal grid, such as many Educational places do. I was recently pointed to one run by the University of Strasbourg.

    Not so shameless plug, if you come to the first annual Visionz party held @ AAcme City in the http://www.greatcanadiangrid.ca/ either by joining that grid as a local member or hypergating in @ login.greatcanadiangrid.ca:8002:AAcme City –TODAY– you can pick up the current issue while having a good time with like minded people who enjoy the hyperverse.

    “Meanwhile, surveys also show that InWorldz users visit other grids as well, making it a popular entry point for OpenSim.

    However, this has recently changed. Filtering out for grids that have had the most registered users over the past few years shows that Kitely has actually supplanted InWorldz as the biggest draw of new registrations last summer.”

    While it is practical to keep in mind that this statistic also shows retention issues, it is still as relevant as others numbers to gauge trending. That trend being to hypergate enabled places. This is just another number among a few that show this fact.

    yippeee for the Hyperverse!!

  • Da Hayward

    Great Stats Maria.
    Im certain next months stats will have a suprise for some

  • Alex Ferraris

    AviWorlds region count is wrong. We have over 1409 in land mass.

    • I sent out an email a week ago asking for your stats — did you not see it? Meanwhile, I’m updating all the data now.

  • kindra Turian

    Don’t forget us at Counter Earth. We have added regions this month with more to come. Thank you!!

    • I’ve got you in my database at 13 regions. Is your land area actually larger due to varregions?

      • kindra Turian

        Hi Maria, yes we have Var Regions here only. Plus we grew by about 75 people this mo with active participants at 137 (I am not sure how that works as what I see it seems to vary on a daily basis) thank you for all the hard work that you do on helping us grow !