Worldwide there are about 7 billion people and among all of them there are around 7000 spoken languages although some of them are rarely used due to migration, globalization, etc. Others however, have greatly increased the number of users due to the increasing population, to foreign language training, etc.
Well, according to Ethnologue the language that has a greater number of speakers is Mandarin Chinese, a language spoken by around 1200 million people, then we find Spanish with about 329 million speakers and English with 328 million.
1. Chinese Mandarin: 1213 million speakers.
2. Spanish: 329 million speakers.
3. English: 328 million speakers.
4. Arabic: 221 million speakers.
5. Indian: 182 million speakers.
6. Bengali: 181 million speakers.
7. Portuguese: 178 million speakers.
8. Russian: 144 million speakers.
9. Japanese: 122 million speakers.
10. German: 90 million speakers.
By continent, the territory where more languages are spoken is Asia, where there are concentrated almost 33% of the languages, then we find that Africa meets around 30%, Oceania and America meet 19% and 14.5% respectively, and then Europe with only 3.5% of the languages.
However, it is anticipated that within 100 years, 90% of these languages will be extinct or will be on the verge of disappearing. It has slso been predicted that within 50 years the most important languages, due to development and economic changes, will be Chinese and Hindi-Urdu followed by English, Spanish and Arabic.
Given all this information, it is clear that language learning is essential to move into the changes that taking place in society due to economy, trade, travel, etc. and one of the best tools that can help us to achieve this purpose are language laboratories.