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Friday, July 28, 2017

INDIA & IT'S INTERNET USAGE

The most recent update regarding, going pro-digital in India will be of Jio. On July 21st Ambani has announced that Reliance Jio will offer free 4G-enabled phones to all its subscribers, although buyers will have to put down a “fully refundable” one-time security deposit of Rs1,500. Ambani has mentioned that Jio is specifically targeting crores of Indians who are still not able to access digital empowerment. This single move by Reliance Jio will likely break tariff barriers in India, one of the world’s largest telecom markets, where even today, only one in three users can afford a smartphone. With one stroke, not only has Reliance Jio promised a data-filled life for these low-end telecom customers, this single move is likely to also shake up India’s telecom market like never before.

About 323 million people in India accessed the internet through their mobile phones in 2016, which corresponds to about 24.3 percent of the country’s population. Both figures are forecast to increase in the coming years, with projections to amount to 524.5 million and around 37.4 percent respectively in 2021. Mobile internet usage in India varies according to people's living areas. As of 2016, India had an estimate of 262 million mobile internet users living in urban communities, and 109 million living in rural areas. These data will be soon changing due to the introduction of Jio Phone.

Jio wifi & Jio PhoneBesides this, Reliance has also announced to give free Wi-Fi to college students, 3 crores may benefit. The company has already submitted a proposal in this regard to the Human Resource Development (HRD) ministry. Reliance Jio had last month made a presentation before the HRD ministry and expressed a desire to connect close to 38,000 colleges (technical and non-technical) across India by deploying free Wi-Fi connectivity. Reliance Jio’s free WiFi service is known as JioNet, and it is available in some cities already. Reliance Jio users who recharge for the service will find that the service also gives them access to some data on the Jio free WiFi services. Users can log in to the Jio WiFi with their Jio number, and access the high-speed internet via WiFi.

Rising numbers in internet usageNow, for those who have already passed out from colleges and started buying high-end phones on your own money, there is no point in cribbing. All you can do is be happy for those who will be able to access this feature and use them appropriately for their education. It’s all about the correct timings. It’s said that by 2021, there will be about 635.8 million internet users in India. Despite the large base of internet users in India, only 26 percent of the Indian population accessed the internet in 2015. This is a significant increase in comparison to the previous years, considering the internet penetration rate in India stood at about 10 percent in 2011.

The history of the internet in India began with the launch of the Educational Research Network (ERNET) in 1986. The network was only made available to educational and research communities. The first publicly available internet service in India was launched by state-owned Videsh Sanchar Nigam Limited (VSNL) on 14 August 1995.As of May 2014, the Internet was delivered to India mainly by 9 different undersea fibers, including SEA-ME-WE 3, Bay of Bengal Gateway and Europe India Gateway, arriving at 5 different landing points.

India going DigitalIndia’s internet user base has already surpassed the US, and today is second largest after China. Globally, the number of internet users is expected to touch 4,170 million by 2020, growing a
t a CAGR of ~6%, and adding ~960 million in the next five years. However, internet user growth in India is expected to be 3x the world average, growing at a CAGR of ~20%. India will add ~400 million users, which is over 40% of incremental internet users worldwide in the next four years.

Less than 10% of India’s population lives in Tier 1 cities. Internet penetration in these areas has already reached saturation, and 75-80% of new user growth will come from rural areas in the next four years. Internet businesses will have a newer set of customers who will:

  1.    Access content via mobile phones and not laptops and desktops
  2.   Want content in local (Indic) languages and not in English
  3. Prefer to consume content via videos, rather than text


It’s no hidden fact that after the introduction of Jiophones in the market there will be a sudden rise in the internet users. This poses a huge opportunity for companies developing local language apps and sites, search interfaces, video streaming and broadcasting, download managers, among many others. At the same time, it presents challenges to prevalent go-to-market models and will require significant retooling of approach for Internet-centric businesses.

E commerce & RetailToday, there is an Internet business for almost everything – selling old furniture, shopping online, booking travel, networking with friends, making payments, consulting doctors…the list goes on. Even offline businesses are trying to get a part of their value chain online. Google is planning to bring 20 million businesses online by 2017 and train over 2 million Indian developers in Android.

Where there are businesses, that’s where customers will flock. Its said that, by 2020, the number of online shoppers are likely to cross 175 million, growing 3.5X over 2015. Technology will enable easy and efficient transactions. The launch of new devices such as Samsung Galaxy Tab Iris, featuring an iris scanner that is Aadhaar and STQC-certified, will enable cashless and paperless services for banking, passport, taxation, and healthcare among others. We will continue to see adoption of payment solutions such as mobile wallets, cash cards, platforms, and POS (point-of-sale) services, dawning the age of well-connected digital economy. At the same time, the Internet is creating a network of SMBs, and micro-entrepreneurs/startups – an ecosystem, with the potential to create thousands of direct and indirect jobs.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s ‘Digital India’ envisages building 100 smart cities across the country. For creating smart cities, India needs a balanced focus in terms of modernizing city infrastructure and leveraging technology to improve the efficiency and capacity of city services. In terms of city infrastructure, investments are required to modernize city services like water, energy, public transportation, roads, and sewage. Investments are also required to take up technology initiatives in core city subsystems like energy, water, transportation, public safety, citizen services, city governance, healthcare and education, and overall at the city level to improve collaboration amongst these subsystems, improve citizens’ participation and to wring out efficiencies from infrastructure assets. The essence of smartness in a city lies in integrating core city subsystems and carrying out a deep analysis of the resultant data in ways that are meaningful to all stakeholders. All of this can be facilitated by leveraging advances in Internet technologies as well as by synergizing with several investments already made in creating technology infrastructure.

Digital IndiaThe Internet is redefining literacy in India. With so many tech startups enabling local language content, digital literacy across India is becoming both possible and significant. The goal is to create one ‘e-Literate’ person in every Indian household by 2020. The Government, NASSCOM, and the private sector have joined hands to form the National Digital Literacy Mission (NDLM) which is working towards making the goal a reality.

India is also collaborating with the US to develop a complete framework on the India-US cyber relationship. The spending on cloud-based security solutions will continue to increase across verticals, leaders here being the BFSI and online retail companies. The Government too has set in motion a number of initiatives that will take effect in the coming years. Among these the focus is on protecting national critical information and infrastructure. This would aim to protect key installations and systems across different verticals.

One of the major issues facing the According to 2007 statistics, the average download speed in India hovered at about 40 KB per second (256 kbit/s), the minimum speed set by TRAI, whereas the international average was 5.6 Mbit/s during the same period. In order to attend this infrastructure issue, the government declared 2007 as "the year of broadband". To compete with international standards of defining broadband speed the Indian Government has taken the aggressive step of proposing a $13 billion national broadband network to connect all cities, towns and villages with a population of more than 500 in two phases targeted for completion by 2012 and 2013. The network was supposed to provide speeds up to 10 Mbit/s in 63 metropolitan areas and 4 Mbit/s in an additional 352 cities. Also, the Internet penetration rate in India is one of the lowest in the world and only accounts for 8.4% of the population compared to the rate in OECD counties, where the average is over 50%. Another issue is the digital divide where growth is biased in favor of urban areas; according to 2010 statistics, more than 75 per cent of the broadband connections in the country are in the top 30 cities. Regulators have tried to boost the growth of broadband in rural areas by promoting higher investment in rural infrastructure and establishing subsidized tariffs for rural subscribers under the Universal service obligation scheme of the Indian government.
Internet segment in India is the lower average bandwidth of broadband connections compared to that of developed countries.

Urban & RuralAlso, in India, less than 46% of women own and use a mobile phone, according to the fourth National Family Health Survey (NFHS) dated 2015-16. This has had the effect of limiting independence for many women, as well as access to opportunities, and the problem is worse when the data is examined more closely. In urbanized centers, 62% of women use their own handsets, but in rural regions, the figure is under 37%. This stark discrepancy doesn’t exist in countries like the US, where rural and urban cellphone penetration is on par at close to 95% for both.


Even with all these troubles, the over-all picture of Internet usage is bright and will be better in the coming years.

Team Chee-Ron's

Vyasan H

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