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Number of Active Gmail Users 2019 & 2020: Statistics, Demographics, & Usage

Category: B2B News
How many active Gmail users are there?
There are over 1.5 billion active Gmail users as of October 2018[1]. That’s one Gmail user for every five people around the globe.

Source: Google; Android Police

Google, founded in September 1998, first started as an online search firm. As the years passed, they expanded their services to accommodate the rising needs of the market. Gmail is one of those expanded services that has since become the most popular free email service online.

The idea that there could be a better way to handle email caught the attention of Paul Buchheit, a developer at Google. He used his “20% time” — a perk given by Google to its engineers to spend a day a week on projects that interest them — and created Gmail. The software officially launched on April 1, 2005. However, the general public was wary that the announcement is just part of an April Fool’s prank — something Google is also known for. Much to the delight of everyone, Gmail’s launch was successful. It then became the first free web-based email with one gigabyte of storage. This article will discuss the number of active Gmail users and will go on to the following major topics:

Who Uses Gmail?

With 1.5 billion active users, Gmail is undeniably one of the most popular email service providers in the US and the world. An individual needs to be at least 13 years old to create an account for most of Google services, including Gmail.

What is the age of Gmail Users?

According to an article by Mashable, the average age of a Gmail user is 31[2]. In the US, Morning Consult conducted a study to find out which age group uses Gmail more.

Source: Morning Consult

According to the data, Gmail is the most frequently used email service provider in almost all age groups. 61% of the age group 18 to 29 frequently use Gmail — the largest among the respondents[3]. The age group 30 to 44 placed second with 54% of them frequently using Gmail. Thirdly, the age groups 45 to 54 and 55 to 64 tied with both of them 36% preferring Gmail. Lastly, only 24% of the age group 65+ prefer Gmail over other email service providers.

Source: comScore

Millennials, the most tech-savvy generation, are typically on the lookout for new things over the digital horizon. That’s why when asked which are their top 3 essential apps, it came as no surprise that the top apps were mostly used for day-to-day communication.

According to the survey, the must-have apps for millennials were Amazon as the most popular app with 35%. Gmail placed second with 30%[4] of the respondents considering the email service provider and an essential part of their daily lives. Lastly, Facebook in third place with 29%.

What is the gender of Gmail Users?

Source: AudienceProject

In a study by AudienceProject, Gmail is the third most-popular app for 10% of American males[5] and fourth for females[6] with 6%. The studies were separately published and sorted by gender. The popular apps for males included Chrome, and Amazon appeared for females. However, they were removed to emphasize the difference in gender-share between popular apps. Moreover, Gmail’s ranking is unaffected even after culling the two apps.

Top Countries That Use Gmail

Email is a vital part of our daily lives; be it personal or work-related, email is used to communicate around the world. Gmail is native to the US, but it has been one of the most recognizable brands available for use in the world market in the past decade. Aside from the US, which countries use and prefer Gmail?

What are the countries that use Gmail?

In the 2018 Global Email Benchmark Report published by SendGrid[7]Gmail is the most popular inbox provider across 23 across countries. Only in the countries Russia and South Korea are where they placed second behind homegrown email service provider brands.

Source: SendGrid

Among the 25 countries, Gmail has the highest share in India with 82% of the respondents saying that they have an account. Additionally, Gmail is also widely used in the US, occupying 42.1% of email service provider share.

Email Client Market Share of Gmail

The number of emails sent and received in 2019 was 294 billion—that’s a lot of emails. Additionally, there are hundreds, if not, thousands of email clients around the globe. Which makes you wonder, how many people use Gmail?

How many people use Gmail?

Source: Litmus

In the report published by Litmus[8], Gmail trailed behind Apple iPhone as the most used email client in 2017 and 2018 with 26% and 27% respectively. However, in the 2019 report by the same firm, Gmail took the top spot from Apple iPhone and became the number one most used email client in the world with a 27.8% share.

Inbox Placement Rates of Gmail

Gmail, being the most used email client around the world, is responsible for sending and receiving a big chunk of the reported hundreds of billions of emails annually. To avoid emails piling up in one place with the risk of important emails getting overlooked, Gmail created categories or tabs to segregate emails.

These tabs are an effective way to organize your inbox. First, the Social tab where messages from social networks and media-sharing sites are received. The second category is Updates, where emails for your notifications, confirmations, receipts, bills, and statements are inboxed. Third, the Promotions tab, this is where you can find messages about deals, offers, and other promotional emails. Fourth, the Forums tab contains emails from online groups, discussion boards, and mailing lists. Lastly, the Primary tab is where you receive emails from people you know, and other emails that can’t be classified under the other tabs. But which Gmail tab receives more emails?

Source: MarketingCharts; Return Path

According to a 2016 study, emails classified as Promotions reached the correct tab with 87.2% — the highest among other tabs. On the other hand, the Primary tab received the least amount of correct emails with 55.5%[9].

Read Rates of Emails in Gmail

Email marketing is one of the most popular ways to reach a target demographic. However, unread and unopened emails are two of e-marketers’ worst nightmares. But what’s the read rates of emails received by Gmail users?

Source: MarketingCharts; Return Path

In the same 2016 study about inbox placement, they also reported the read rates of emails by each tab. It was found out that emails classified under Updates were read the most by Gmail users with a rate of 28%. Unfortunately for e-marketers, the lowest read rate was reported for emails classified under Promotions with a rate of 19.2%[10].

Device Usage of Gmail Users

What devices are used by Gmail users?

Source: Litmus

There are three major ways to access your email: desktop, webmail, and mobile. In the report by Litmus, they listed the share of email opens by the device. As of the first quarter of 2019, the majority of email users are using mobile to access their email with a share of 41.9%. The second-most used way to access emails is webmail with 39.9%. Lastly, email opens via desktop with a share of 18.2%.

Source: Litmus

From the same report, Gmail dominated the webmail environment. From the second quarter of 2018 to the first quarter of 2019, Gmail outperformed its competitors by a lot. As of Q1 of 2019, Gmail accounted for 26.2% of webmail opens.

US Companies Using Gmail

Source: Customer Stories

Businesses need to have an email to communicate with their stakeholders.

A lot is going into email hosting, which can be a little costly. Gmail both offers free web-based email and email hosting services. This makes their usage more attractive for small to medium businesses. That’s why it’s not surprising that 92% of US startups are using Gmail according to the report of Customer Stories[11].



  1. ^Number of active Gmail users worldwide from January 2012 to October 2018
  2. ^Who Is the Average Gmail User?
  3. ^The Gmail/Yahoo Mail Age Divide
  4. ^These Are Millennials’ Must-Have Apps
  5. ^Leading apps that male online users in the United States least can do without as of 3rd quarter 2019
  6. ^Leading apps that female online users in the United States least can do without as of 3rd quarter 2019
  7. ^SendGrid’s 2018 Global Email Benchmark Report
  8. ^The 2019 Email Client Market Share
  9. ^Gmail inbox placement rate worldwide from October 20 to 27, 2016, by tab
  10. ^Gmail read rates worldwide from October 20 to 27, 2016, by tab
  11. ^Gmail Statistics 2020
Nestor Gilbert

By Nestor Gilbert

Senior writer for FinancesOnline. If he is not writing about the booming SaaS and B2B industry, with special focus on developments in CRM and business intelligence software spaces, he is editing manuscripts for aspiring and veteran authors. He has compiled years of experience editing book titles and writing for popular marketing and technical publications.

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