Photo: Worldwide there are 2.0 Billion People Surfing the Internet - WOW
The number of Internet users worldwide has doubled in the past five years and will surpass the 2 billion mark in 2010, with the majority of the 226 million new users this year coming from developing countries, the United Nations telecommunication agency is reporting.
The number of people with Internet access at home has increased from 1.4 billion in 2009 to almost 1.6 billion in 2010, with 65 per cent of these in developed countries and only 13.5 per cent in developing countries, where access in schools, at work and public locations is critical.
By the end the year, 71 per cent of the population in developed countries will be online, compared to 21 per cent in developing countries. Regional differences are significant: 65 per cent of Europeans are on the Internet, compared to only 9.6 per cent of Africans.
While high-speed Internet is still out of reach for many people in poorer countries, mobile telephony is becoming ubiquitous, with access to networks now available to over 90 per cent of the global population. Data indicate that among the estimated 5.3 billion mobile subscriptions by the end of 2010, 3.8 billion will be in the developing world.
Overall, the price of services is falling, but high-speed Internet access remains prohibitively expensive, especially in low-income developing countries.