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The State of the Internet - 2024

From the Digital 2024 Global Overview Report – published by DataReportal in partnership with Meltwater and We Are Social

It’s been a while since I took a look at the worldwide Internet. The statistics cited below come from Datareportal.

The world population in January 2024 was 8.08 billion, up 74 million from a year earlier, a growth rate of 0.9%.

There were 5.61 billion unique mobile subscribers in January, up 138 million (2.5%) over a year earlier.

5.35 billion people used the Internet at the end of 2023, up 97 million (1.8%) from a year earlier. This means almost two-thirds of people on the planet are connecting to the web. Some interesting statistics about worldwide Internet connectivity:

  • 63.5% of females are connecting to the Internet, and 68.8% of males.
  • 61.8% of worldwide Internet access comes from laptops and desktops
  • 78.8% of urban residents worldwide use the Internet versus 48.9% of rural people.

The least connected nations: North Korea at 99.9%. Between 80% and 90%—Central Africa Republic, Burundi, South Sudan, Niger, Yemen, Afghanistan, Ethiopia, Burkina Faso, Madagascar

The countries that still have the most unconnected populations:

  • India 684 million
  • China 336 million
  • Pakistan 132 million
  • Nigeria 103 million
  • Bangladesh 96 million
  • Indonesia 76 million
  • Tanzania 47 million
  • Uganda 36 million

The average time spent online worldwide is 6 hours 40 minutes per day, up 3 minutes from 2023. That means the world spends a combined 780 trillion minutes using the Internet in a year.

The countries with the most average daily usage:

  • 9+ hours—South Africa, Brazil
  • 8 to 9 hours—Philippines, Columbia, Argentina, Chile, Russia, Malaysia, U.A.E.
  • U.S. is at 7 hours 3 minutes. 20th in the world.

Younger people worldwide spend more time online. The age group 16-24 spends 7 hours 15 minutes online daily, while those 55-64 spend 5 hours 15 minutes.

5.04 billion people use social media, up 266 million (5.6%) from a year earlier. There are 8.4 new social media users connected per second.

People are also spending more time on social media. The average TikTok viewer spends 34 hours per month on the site. Other sites with the most usage include YouTube (28 hours), Facebook (19.8 hours), Whatsapp Messenger (17 hours), Instagram (15.8 hours), Line (8.2 hours), X (4.6 hours), Telegram (3.8 hours), Snapchat (3.5 hours), FB Messenger (3.3 hours), Pinterest (1.7 hours), and LinkedIn (0.9 hours).

Countries with the biggest percentage of social media users.

  • Over 90%—U.A.E, Saudi Arabia, South Korea
  • 85%—90%—Hong Kong, Singapore, Netherlands
  • 80%—85%—Spain, Malaysia, U.K., Canada, Norway, Austria, Germany, Sweden
  • U.S. is at 70.1%—36th place.

The most popular uses of the Internet (percentage that use each function)

  1. Chat and Messaging 94.7%
  2. Social Media 94.3%
  3. Search 80.7 %
  4. Shopping 74.3 %
  5. Location services / Maps 54.4%
  6. Email 49.5%
  7. Music 48.1%
  8. Weather 42.2%
  9. Entertainment 40.6%
  10. News 40.3%

Average time worldwide spent with various Internet/Media per day:

  • Using the Internet 6 hours 40 minutes
  • Watching Video (Online and TV) 3 hours 6 minutes
  • Using Social Media 2 hours 23 minutes
  • Reading Press 1 hour 41 minutes
  • Streaming Music 1 hour 25 minutes
  • Using a Game Console 1 hour 2 minutes
  • Listening to Broadcast Radio 50 minutes
  • Listening to Podcasts 49 minutes

Online ads now represent 70% of all advertising dollars. Worldwide, $1.03 trillion was spent on online ads in 2023, up $70 billion over the previous year. $719.2 billion of that spending was done on digital search sites and social media.

By Doug Dawson, President at CCG Consulting

Dawson has worked in the telecom industry since 1978 and has both a consulting and operational background. He and CCG specialize in helping clients launch new broadband markets, develop new products, and finance new ventures.

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