The Department of Telecommunication and Postal Services (DTPS) has stated that it is committed to focusing on the development of broadband in SA.
Siyabonga Cwele, DTPS minister stated that the department agreed with the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) with regards to its focus on the importance of broadband as an economic enabler.
In order to bring ICTs into the hands of ordinary people, the ITU believes that it is important to measure the information society, identify gaps and track progress.
ICT statistics for 2014 according to the ITU include:
1. Africa leads in mobile broadband growth.
2. Mobile broadband penetration in Africa will reach 20% this year – up from 2% in 2010.
3. By the end of 2014, 55% of all mobile broadband subscriptions are expected to be in the developing world – compared to only 20% in 2008.
4. Globally, mobile broadband penetration will reach 32% by the end of the year – almost double the penetration rate in 2011, and four times as high as 2009.
5. In developed countries, mobile broadband penetration will reach 84%, which is four times as high as the percentage in developing countries (21%).
6. By the end of 2014, there will be 2.3 billion mobile broadband subscriptions globally – five times as many as there were six years ago.
7. Fixed broadband growth, on the other hand, is waning in developing countries.
8. Forty-four percent of all fixed broadband subscriptions are in the Asia-Pacific region – compared to only 0.5% in Africa.
9. Fixed broadband rates are expected to drop from 18% in 2011 to 6% this year.
10. In developed countries, fixed broadband penetration will grow at around 3.5% in 2014 – compared with 4.8% in 2011.
11. Despite double-digit growth in fixed broadband over the past four years, penetration in Africa remains low, at 0.4% by the end of 2014.
12. Almost three billion people – 40% of the world’s population – are using the Internet.
13. Close to one out of three people in developing countries are online.
14. In developing countries, the number of Internet users will have doubled in five years, from 974 million in 2009 to 1.9 billion this year.
15. Internet user penetration has reached 40% globally, 78% in developed countries and 32% in developing countries.
16. 2014 growth rates in developed countries remain relatively low (3.3%) – compared with 8.7% in developing countries.
17. In Africa, almost 20% of the population will be online by the end of the year – up from 10% in 2010.
18. In the Americas, close to two out of every three people will be using the Internet by the end of 2014 – the second highest penetration rate after Europe.
19. Europe’s Internet penetration will reach 75% ? three out of every four people – by the end of 2014.
20. While 44% of the world’s households will have Internet access by the end of 2014, only one out of 10 households in Africa is connected.