Top 13 Languages Exploding Online – Are You Speaking Them?

There are around 7000 languages spoken worldwide. Some major world languages have millions of speakers, while some endangered languages are spoken by a few individuals. The popularity of any language can be decided based on the number of native speakers or total speakers.

The 26th Edition of Ethnologue that was published in 2023, captures all the languages that have 45 million or more speakers. Our team has referred to their data and created this list to highlight the most spoken languages. We have also captured the most popular languages on the internet along with it. For this list, we have referred to the analysis from


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English is the most common language of communication for people from various language backgrounds. It has over 1.4 billion speakers, but only 380 million people speak it as their first language.

Around 59 nations use English as the only or one of the official languages. It is also an official language for many international organizations, such as the United Nations, European Union, etc. Statistics say that around 50% of online content uses English. So half of the things on the internet are in English alone.

Chinese (Mandarin)

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Even though English tops the list of the most popular languages in the world, Chinese can claim its fame. The standard Mandarin Chinese language has a record number of 939 million native speakers.

Based on native speakers, Chinese tops the list of most spoken languages. If you consider the hundreds of local Chinese language varieties, the number of speakers only gets bigger. Yet, it is not that popular for websites or social media content outside its native region.


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Around 610 million people worldwide speak Hindi as their first or second language. It is the third most spoken language in the whole world. The spoken form of the Hindi language differs in tone from the written version.

Modern spoken Hindi is new as a language and has close similarities to many nearby languages. It is also one of the two official languages in India.


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Spanish is the second most spoken language, according to the number of native speakers. There are around 485 million people worldwide with Spanish as their mother tongue. This means there are more native Spanish speakers based mainly in Spain and America than native English speakers.

Interestingly, Spanish is also a very popular choice on the internet. Around 5.7% of online websites, e-commerce sites, etc., use Spanish as the language medium.


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French is the first language for only 81 million people all over the world. But this language has a huge second-language speaker base of around 229 million. So, the French language enjoys a great international reputation. It is also a popular choice for around 4.3% online content.


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Modern standardized Arabic does not entail a lot of native speakers. Yet, there are many spoken varieties of Arabic languages spoken by a large number of people. This language originated in the Arabian peninsula.

It is now popular in the Middle East, Africa, and other regions. There are 274 million second-language speakers of modern Arabic, excluding the massive number of regional Arabic dialects.


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Bengali, commonly called Bangla, is the sixth most spoken native language and the seventh most popular language worldwide. It is the primary language in the Bengal region of South Asia and has a large number of speakers in both India and Bangladesh.

Around 273 million people can speak Bengali fluently as a native or second language. However, this language’s online presence is limited to its native region.


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The popularity of the Portuguese language is mainly due to its colonial history. Portuguese was the native language of many explorers and adventure lovers in the past. And as they traveled, the language spread outside Portugal.

Now, almost 264 million people speak Portuguese as their first or second language. This language is most widely spoken in Brazil, Mozambique, Bossa Nova, etc.


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The Russian language is famous for its difficult grammar and beautiful script. Despite being a tough language to learn, it is the ninth most spoken language in the world. There are around 255 million Russian speakers all over the world.

It is the most spoken language in Europe, leaving English, Spanish, French, and others far behind. It is also one of the languages spoken in the United Nations. Plus, the Russian language has a strong 4.3% online presence.


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Urdu is known as the language of poets. This beautiful language is part of the Hindustani language tradition. To date, many words in the Urdu vocabulary are from other related languages, such as Persian or the Old Hindi version of Khadi Boli. It is the first language for around 71 million people, while more than 232 million people in total speak it in some capacity.


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Seeing Indonesian in the topmost spoken languages might surprise you.  But you should know that around 199 million people speak Indonesian as their first or second language. As Indonesia is the fourth most populous country in the world, this number is very natural. The modern standardized Indonesian language is a variety of Malay.


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The modern German language is the most standardized and formal version of the German language. It is spoken by around 133 million people. The standard German language is very popular on social media, website content, and other online mediums.


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Japanese does not have many second-language speakers. Even then, this is one of the most spoken languages in the world and on the internet. This might be possible as there are around 123 million native Japanese speakers all over the world.

With the rise of anime, Japanese is slowly becoming a very popular choice on the internet as well. The online presence of this language is around 4.6%.

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