More than 50% of the world’s population has access to the Internet

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Today, more than half of the world’s population uses the Internet, and 96 percent of the population live in mobile phone coverage areas. But not everyone can take advantage of the Internet. These are the findings of a new UN study on digital development.

According to the latest data from the International Telecommunication Union (ITU), today 58% of men and 48% of women use the Internet. There is a similar situation with regard to mobile communications. However, in 24 of 84 countries that provided data, the ratio of women to men using cellular communications is equal, and in some places women are even ahead. The most impressive numbers in Chile: women outperform men by 12 percent there.

In general, 96 percent of the world’s population currently live in the mobile cellular signal coverage area, and 93 percent is within network accessibility  area of 3G or subsequent generations. In the North and South America and , Asia-Pacific region and Europe, the latter is over 95 percent, in the Arabian countries 91, in the CIS 88, and in Africa 79%.

Today more than half of the world’s population –4.1 billion people use the Internet. At the same time, the rest -3.6 billion people are not connected to the World Wide Web. Most of them live in the least developed countries, where on average two out of ten people can use the Internet.

The main thing that impedes joining the digital world is the high cost of the Internet and mobile communication. In addition, people in poor countries lack the skills to work with digital technology. So, in 40 of 84 countries, less than half of the population has basic computer skills: for example, they don’t know how to copy a file or send an e-mail with an application.

The authors of the report call on the governments of these and other countries to pay special attention to the development of digital literacy of the population.

According t estimates by the International Telecommunication Union, by the end of 2019, 57 percent of households worldwide will have access to their own Internet. At the same time, the number of computers in each family from 2018 to 2019 will increase by only one percent. This is simply explained: in many countries, in order to connect to the Internet, people no longer need a computer, a smartphone is enough for this, reports news.un.org.

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