The Digital Divide Around the World

In an interesting op-ed for The Huffington Post, digital marketer and entrepreneur Lottie Ntim examines the digital divide — not here in America, but globally:

While Web growth in North America can be said to have been largely driven by technologies that cater to personal needs (PCs, smartphones, smartphone apps), Internet usage in other regions such as Africa, has developed through more social channels, such as mobile banking. While internet penetration in Africa hovered around 16 percent last year, mobile telephony soared to one of the highest in the world. Currently, 90 percent of the continent has access to a mobile phone—a phenomenon that has helped topple dictatorships and connects rural communities to otherwise difficult to reach services such as healthcare, in addition to the now common money transfers via text.

Nevertheless, there is certainly no shortage of demand for technologies developed for personal use in this region. However their cost and the likelihood of limited access to Wi-Fi networks has meant a different kind of growth for Africa when it comes to Web usage.

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