Global Internet Connectivity Still Needs Work: Report
The Internet Society says many people around the world still only have Internet access using mobile phones and that this needs to change.More than 3 billion people around the world today are online, but hundreds of millions of them are only able to use the Internet via a mobile device such as a smartphone due to a lack of affordable local Internet access. While that's not terrible, it still means that they can't easily take advantage of many opportunities that Internet access via a desktop or laptop computer and a dedicated broadband connection can allow, such as educational research, advanced job searches and more. That's one of the key conclusions of a new study, the 2015 Global Internet Report, released July 7 by The Internet Society, a nonprofit that is the organizational home of the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF). The report, which is the group's second annual report on the global state of the Internet, focused this time on the impact of the mobile Internet, which the group says has fundamentally transformed Internet access and use and can help provide full and improved access to the world's next billion users. Some 94 percent of the world's population is covered by a mobile network today, while some 48 percent are covered by mobile broadband and 28 percent subscribe to mobile Internet services, the report states. One of the most intriguing conclusions of the study found that more than 80 percent of online time by mobile users is spent using apps and not a mobile browser, according to the report.
Michael Kende, the author of the report and chief economist for The Internet Society, told eWEEK that while it is great that more people around the world have access to the Internet using mobile devices, more needs to be done to help bring affordable broadband access to users on non-mobile devices, which can offer more opportunities.