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A whopping 24,569 people registered for the South by Southwest Interactive festival this year, up 27 percent from 2011. For five days and nights they stormed Austin to network, party, debate new tech trends and raise a glass to the madness of geekdom.

But to many products, brands and commentators, the chatter that matters is online.

Seattle-based social media analytics shop Simply Measured crunched the numbers and came up with some interesting figures on the #SXSW buzz that flowed through Twitter. A few headlines:

  • Louder and louder: Total tweet volume jumped 60% from 2011 to 2012, from 314,946 tweets last year to 503,778 tweets this year.
  • Here I am: Foursquare won out among sharing apps used to post to Twitter, edging out Instagram and lapping YouTube.
  • Highlight the highlight: An impressive 75 percent of the buzz around social discovery apps was for ambient awareness app Highlight. More on Highlight and its competitors here.
  • The picture matters: 41 percent of the SXSW Interactive content sent out via Twitter was photos. 34 percent was check-ins.
  • iPhone still king: 77 percent of #SXSW tweets posted on a mobile platform were posted via iOS.

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