Africa's Anticipated Mobile Internet Revolution

Africa's Anticipated Mobile Internet Revolution

Students in South Africa learn how to use smartphones. Photo: <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/22774534@N00/4308190927/in/photostream/">DI GameWorks (flickr)</a>
Students in South Africa learn how to use smartphones. Photo: DI GameWorks (flickr)

The internet revolution in Africa will not be televised, but it will most likely be tweeted from a mobile device.

In fact, more young people in developing countries access the internet via mobile devices than in developed ones, explain Opera Software developers in a World News Heard Now article.

About 5.81 percent of total web browsing in Africa is done on mobile devices, compared to 4.7 percent in North America, according to figures cited by The Independent. And depending on the country, the percentage can be much higher. The Independent cites the example of Chad, where about 29 percent of all web browsing is sourced to mobile devices.

Telcom experts are expecting enormous growth in continent-wide internet access.
CEO Brian Herlihy of the African broadband company SEACOM told the Christian Science Monitor that total internet access in Africa tops out at about 15 percent -- a figure he expects to grow by 50 percent each year. And he expects IT spending to go up -- tripling to $150 billion by some estimates -- as telecoms, phonemakers and service operators wage price wars.

Whether its being texted or tweeted, the revolution has begun.

Curated news and insights about innovative, market-driven solutions to poverty explored through news, commentary and discussion.

Learn more »

Global Envision newsletter