On July 17, the World Bank released a study showing that approximately three quarters of our world’s population currently has access to a mobile phone. Since 2000, the number of mobile phone subscriptions has skyrocketed from 1 billion to over 6 billion. Additionally, over 30 billion apps were downloaded last year alone.
Additionally, 5 billion of these mobile subscriptions are in developing countries. This is a direct sign of the importance of mobile technology in areas of the globe that haven’t produced land-based communication infrastructures. These mobile devices will continue to be a vital part of our international communications system as computer access slowly expands on the global level.
“Mobile communications offer major opportunities to advance human and economic development –- from providing basic access to health information to making cash payments, spurring job creation, and stimulating citizen involvement in democratic processes,” said World Bank Vice President for Sustainable Development Rachel Kyte. “The challenge now is to enable people, businesses, and governments in developing countries to develop their own locally-relevant mobile applications so they can take full advantage of these opportunities.”