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January 27, 2009

Look who’s counting…

KOMAROM, Hungary – As Charlie likes to say (sometimes too frequently), we’re not usually ones to toot our own horn. However, sometimes big things happen that just need to be mentioned. Far less frequently than mentioning horns, do we talk about factories. Well “no more”, we say. For the Nokia manufacturing plant in Komarom, Hungary has just produced its 500 millionth device. (An N79, in silver, in case you’re wondering).

Established 10 years ago, the plant has produced a variety of top Nokia devices, including the best-selling Nokia 2760, the 6300 and the 5800, which has already shipped 1 million units.

Quantifying 500,000,000 in your mind is quite tricky – at least it is for me. So, I just typed the number into Google to see what might come up.

It turns out, that about 11 months ago, Mozilla had a similar celebration with 500,000,000 downloads of Firefox. Which, at the time it compared to “an audience size of 10,000 Rome Colosseums combined. It would be the wright, in kilograms, of 8,500 Boeing 747 airplanes.”

But these aren’t the only remarkable things to hit the 500 million milestone.

Late last year, Scientists shed light on a 500 million year old mystery, figuring out how 500 million-year-old fossils came to survive the gruelling temperatures beneath the Earth’s crust to become a mountainous ridge in the Rockies.

Last year a house close to Monte Carlo was valued at a whopping $500 million, before being snapped up by russian billionaire, and one of the world’s richest men, Roman Abramovich.

And finally, only last month Zimbabwe’s central bank was forced to issue a $500 million note following continuing hyperinflation through last year. The note is the highest current denomination.

So that’s our starter for 10. Congratulations to the team in Hungary on this pretty remarkable feet, now feel free to file your own interesting facts and stories around the number 500 million below.