Measuring the global information society

Global internet use continues to grow - up 6.6% in 2014.

ITU (The International Telecommunication Union) has released its 2014 Measuring the Information Society report.

The report reports on key developments in ICT, tracks the affordability of ICT and ranks the performance of individual countries in its ICT Development Index (IDI).

Key findings

  • More than 3 billion people are now online
  • The number of internet users in developing countries has doubled in the years 2009-2014
  • The mobile phone market is reaching saturation levels (almost 7 billion subscriptions).  Growth will fall to a 10 year low in 2014
  • There is a growing divide in internet access between urban and rural communities – particularly in developing countries
  • Household internet access continues to grow (44% worldwide)
    • 78% developed; 31% developing; only 5% in the least connected countries
  • The report notes that Post Offices and libraries have a role to play in broadening access to the internet
  • Mobile broadband is growing fastest in developing countries – but…
    • The divide between developing and developed countries remains huge

Performance of individual countries

The ITU’s ICT Development Index ranks countries on affordability, access, use and skills.

  • Denmark takes this year’s top spot in the rankings
  • Other European countries in the top 20 include:
    • Sweden (3rd), Iceland (4th), United Kingdom (5th), Norway (6th), Finland (7th), Germany (17th) and France (18th)
  • Some countries, including Belarus, Bosnia & Herzegovina, Georgia, Thailand and United Arab Emirates, have recorded above average improvements in the last year. 

Source: ITU.