Developing nations in APAC to count for over 50% of data users

Written by Press Trust of India | New Delhi | Updated: May 7 2014, 02:59am hrs
InternetBy end 2014, 44 per cent of the world's households will have Internet access.
Developing nations in Asia Pacific region, including India and China, will account for more than half of the world's seven billion mobile data users by the end of 2014, according to International Telecommunication Union.

Data from ITU showed that even as global markets may be heading towards saturation with the lowest-ever global growth rate of 2.6 per cent, Asia Pacific and Africa have witnessed the strongest rise in userbase.

"Mobile-cellular subscriptions will reach almost seven billion by end 2014 and 3.6 billion of these will be in the Asia-Pacific region. The increase is mostly due to growth in the developing world where mobile-cellular subscriptions will account for 78 per cent of the world's total," it said.

Globally, mobile-broadband penetration is expected to reach 32 per cent by end 2014. The number of mobile-broadband subscriptions will reach 2.3 billion globally and 55 per cent of all mobile-broadband subscriptions are expected to be in the developing world.

By the end of 2014, ITU estimates there will be almost three billion Internet users with two-thirds of them coming from the developing world.

"The newly released ICT figures confirm once again that information and communication technologies continue to be the key drivers of the information society," ITU Secretary-General Hamadoun I Toure said.

The report showed that fixed-telephone penetration has been declining for the past five years. By 2014-end, there will be about 100 million fewer fixed-telephone subscriptions than in 2009.

ITU estimates fixed-broadband penetration to reach almost 10 per cent globally by end of 2014.

"Of all fixed-broadband subscriptions, 44 per cent are in APAC and 25 per cent are in Europe. In contrast, Africa accounts for less than 0.5 per cent and despite double-digit growth over the last four years, penetration in Africa remains very low," it said.

Africa, the Arab States, and CIS are the only regions with double-digit fixed-broadband penetration growth rates, it added.

By end 2014, 44 per cent of the world's households will have Internet access.