Just over a fifth of global internet users are now using widgets, but Europe is lagging behind North America in their adoption, according to new figures.

Web measurement firm comScore’s new ‘Widget Metrix’ reveals that 21% of internet users viewed one in April.

Widget penetration was highest in North America, where 40.3% of users visited a site with a widget, followed by Europe on 24.3% and Latin America on 17.5%.

The group also found photo-related widgets to be the most popular – Slide and RockYou were first and second with 13.8% and 9.7% of the widget audience respectively.

Social networks, including Bebo and, more recently, Facebook have opened up their sites to widget developers, and comScore’s new metrix seems to underline their growing usage and a greater need for measurement tools.

The figures are from April this year, so will not have been influenced by Facebook’s new widget programme. Figures show RockYou and Slide are among the most popular on the social networking site, however.

comScore said Facebook’s move would “likely have a significant impact in shaping the widget landscape over the coming months”.

Further reading:

Q&A: Snipperoo’s Ivan Pope on brand widgets