the number of smartphone owners in the world has reached 4.3 billion

the number of smartphone owners in the world has reached 4.3 billion

The number of smartphone owners in the world has exceeded 4.3 billion people (54% of the Earth’s population), according to the latest report of the GSMA trade organization. Researchers note that 4.6 billion people currently use the mobile Internet: 4 billion access the network using smartphones, and 600 million access the Internet through regular phones.

According to the GSMA, 69% of users have smartphones with 4G support, and 17% – with 5G support. The organization connects this circumstance with the development of the markets of North America, East Asia and the Pacific region.

About 69% of smartphones used to access mobile internet in sub-Saharan Africa support only 3G. In the Middle East and North Africa, this figure does not exceed 33%. 2G and 3G networks provide coverage for millions of users in low- and middle-income countries.

The number of mobile Internet users reached a record 57% of the Earth’s population, but 3.4 billion people still do not have access to the network. Most of those who do not use mobile internet live in areas with network coverage, which shows the digital divide. This barrier decreased from 40% in 2021 to 38% in 2022 – 3 billion people. Only 5% of those who do not use mobile Internet live in areas without network coverage.

In low- and middle-income countries, adults in rural areas are 29% less likely to use mobile internet than those in urban areas. According to researchers, women use the mobile Internet 19% less often than men.

In addition, two-thirds of people who live in areas with coverage and do not use mobile internet do not have mobile phones, underscoring the importance of increasing phone availability. The researchers explain that the lack of digital skills and literacy, security issues, availability of services and availability of appropriate content in local languages ​​are obstacles to the use of smartphones.

Of the 3 billion people who do not use the mobile Internet, 950 million have a smartphone (350 million) or a regular cellular phone (600 million), but they use only basic services, including voice and SMS.

In 2022, 200 million people started using the mobile Internet — the rate of growth slowed down — in 2020-2021, the figure grew by 300 million people per year. In the least developed countries, only 25% of the population uses the mobile Internet, in low- and middle-income countries – 52%, in high-income countries – 85%.

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