Mobile growth benefits developing countries

The number of people who own a mobile phone is well and truly on the rise. With three quarters of the world’s population now having access to mobile communications, the ever rising number doesn’t look likely to slow down any time soon. This is great news for Penta Consulting, the number one supplier to the mobile and connectivity market.

The spread of mobile technology is having a very positive affect on developing countries. It is providing new opportunities for financial inclusion and entrepreneurship to some of the world’s poorest developing regions. The number of mobile subscriptions in the world was fewer then 1 billion in 2000; there are now 6 billion mobile subscriptions worldwide. 5 billion of which are in developing countries.

The new World Bank study suggests that the number of mobile phone subscriptions in the world will soon exceed that of the hum population, as more and more people are beginning to own more than one mobile phone. Leading ICT policy specialist at the World Bank, Tim Kelly says, “The mobile revolution is right at the start of its growth curve: mobile devices are becoming cheaper and more powerful while networks are doubling the bandwidth roughly every 18 months and expanding into rural areas.”

This new report by the World Bank, which is the third in the series Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) for Development, analyzed the growth and evolution of mobile communications and data-based services such as mobile applications. 

More than 30 billion mobile applications were downloaded to mobile devices in 2011 the report said. It then explores the developing global ‘app economy’, the consequences this has on the developing economies of emerging nations and how it is impacting approaches to entrepreneurship and employment.

World Bank Vice President for Sustainable Development, Rachel Kyte said “Mobilecommunications offer major opportunities to advance human and economic development – from providing basic access to health information to making cash payments, spurring job creation and stimulation citizen involvement in democratic processes”

Businesses that are based around mobile app technology are still in the early stages of development, but could have huge employment and economic potential. The report emphasizes the role of governments in enabling mobile application development. Kyte said that the challenge now is to enable people, business and government in developing countries to create locally-relevant mobile applications so they can take full advantage of these opportunities.

About Lucy Godfrey

Public Relations and Marketing student at Leeds Metropolitan University. Currently doing a 3 month internship with Penta.

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