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‘Snapshot’ of broadband deployment issued at ITU Telecom World 2011

The 40th anniversary edition of ITU Telecom World opened this week to 250 leaders from government, the private sector and the global technology community.


October 26, 2011  


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The 40th anniversary edition of ITU Telecom World opened this week to 250 leaders from government, the private sector and the global technology community.

At the conference, held in Geneva, the organization unveiled a new mini-report, The World in 2011, which the organization says reveals impressive growth in areas such as global Internet use, particularly in developing countries.

The report forecasts close to six billion mobile cellular subscriptions forecast by the end of this year. In addition, upwards of 2.3 billion people are using the Internet.

Growth is fastest in the developing world, and amongst the young, with almost half 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 developing world’s share of the world’s total Internet users has grown from 44% five years ago, to 62% today. Global Internet penetration has grown by over 50% in three years – from 13% in 2008 to 20% in 2011.

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 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%, 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.