Your eyes may now begin popping
The United Nations has just predicted that 2 billion people, or around one-third of the entire population of Earth, will be connected to the World Wide Web.
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Even in some of the most poverty-stricken countries around the globe, Internet access is continuing to expand. Of course, civilized countries still have a huge lead over the not so fortunate nations.
The UN report says "western" countries will have a 71% adoption rate by the end of the year, compared to just 21% in developing parts of the world. But 21% is nothing to balk at.
The report comes from the UN's International Telecommunications Union (ITU), which has been monitoring global Internet use for several years. In fact, it was only five years ago that we were celebrating one billion people online. That number is now set to be doubled, from one-sixth of the planet to one-third.
For developing areas, although Internet connectivity infrastructure is firmly in place, many cannot afford it. In the Central African Republic, monthly broadband access cost about 40 times the average monthly income for a resident there.
Meanwhile, the Macao province in China has the relatively cheapest broadband set-up, with a connection there costing just 0.3% of the average individual's income.
On a side not, the report also notes that a stunning 90% of the world's population now has access to a mobile network, and it's expected that 5.3 billion people will have a mobile service subscription by the end of the year. In that sector, the developing parts of the world are much more connected. In fact they account for more than half of the current mobile users.
Of course, in the developed world, which has a smaller ratio of the entire global population, it's kind of hard to grow in the mobile sector. The average individual in a developed country actually has 1.16 mobile service subscriptions.
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