At least 2.3 billion people now using the Internet, says ITU

The world has seen impressive growth in areas such as Internet use, particularly in developing countries, the UN Agency International Telecommunication Union (ITU) says. An ITU mini-report, “The World in 2011”, released Tuesday at the ongoing ITU Telecom World conference in Geneva, Switzerland, also confirms that ICT growth has been equally rapid, with close to 6 billion mobile cellular subscriptions forecast by the end of 2011, and around 2.3 billion people using the Internet. Growth is fastest in the developing world, and among the young,
it says,with almost half of the world’s online population now under 25 years old. That number should continue to increase steadily as Internet penetration continues to grow in schools. The new ITU figures provide a quick snapshot of broadband deployment worldwide, revealing gaping disparities in high-speed access. While international Internet bandwidth has grown from 11,000 Gbps in 2006 to close to 80,000 Gbps in 2011, Europeans enjoy on average almost 90,000 bps of bandwidth per user compared to Internet users in Africa, who are limited
to around 2,000 bps per user. The report shows that the world’s top broadband economies are all located in Europe, Asia and the Pacific. In the Republic of Korea, mobile broadband penetration now exceeds 90 percent, with nearly all fixed broadband connections providing speeds equal to or above 10 Mbps. In comparison, broadband users in countries such as Ghana, Mongolia, Oman and Venezuela are limited to broadband speeds below 2 Mbps


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