The International Telecommunication Union has ranked India, the second largest mobile market in the world after China, at 116 in its ICT Development Index for 2010.
It is a shame for telecom stake holders in India. India has 601.73 million active wireless users, 34.18 million wireline users and 12.50 million broadband users at the end of July 2011. India is yet to improve its ranking in the last few years, despite its growth numbers.
The ranking significant if we look at countries who are close to India’s ranking. Ghana and Nigeria are ranked 120 and 122, respectively.
The ranking is according to their level of ICT access, use and skills, and compares 2008 and 2010 scores.
Republic of Korea is the number one in the ICT Development Index for 2010. The other prominent countries in the ICT index are UK (ranked 10), Japan (13), Australia (14), US (17), Russia (47), Turkey (59), Brazil (64), Mexico (75), China (80), South Africa (97) and Indonesia (101).
The ICT’s report ‘Measuring the Information Society 2011‘ projects that ICT accelerated globally, spurred by 50 percent fall in price of telephone and broadband Internet services between 2008 and 2010.
The United Arab Emirates and Russia rank first within their respective regions and Uruguay ranks highest in South America. Saudi Arabia, Morocco, Viet Nam, and Russia were some of the most dynamic countries between 2008 and 2010.
While the IDI leaders are all from the developed world, it is extremely encouraging to see that the most dynamic performers are developing countries. The mobile miracle is putting ICT services within reach of even the most disadvantaged people and communities. Our challenge now is to replicate that success in broadband,” Hamadoun Toure, secretary general of ITU.
According to the report, the price of ICT services dropped by 18 percent globally between 2008 and 2010, with the biggest decrease in fixed broadband Internet services, where average of prices has fallen by 52 percent in 165 economies.
In developing countries like India, the wireless broadband internet access remains the strongest growth sector with mobile broadband growing by 160 percent between 2009 and 2010. By end 2010, 154 economies worldwide have launched mobile broadband or 3G networks.
With the declining prices of broadband all over the world, a high-speed Internet connection seems still unaffordable in many low-income economies. For example, in Africa at end 2010, fixed broadband services cost on average the equivalent of 290 percent of monthly income, down from 650 percent in 2008.
By Rashi Varshney