Millions of young Africans dream of Europe, hundreds of thousands depart, thousands die in the Mediterranean. But there's more. It is the story of an opportunity. Two factors promise an exponential growth: the demographic and digital growth. Internet is a truth, and history to tell is that of the next billion people who will be online.
Today the population is connected by more than three billion people: in 2025 will be five billion, according to estimates presented in London at the first conference organized in Europe by the Economic Information website Quartz. The arrival of the technology is disruptive as it could be in the old Europe, but without the superstructure of the old industries and interests to defend. It is cultivated on fertile soils. In Africa today, less than one in ten people have access to a fixed telephone line, but eight out of ten have a mobile phone, and 30% of users use the phone to make payments. The change is fast. Four out of five of the largest economies in the world in ten years will be in Asia, and the gross domestic product of 30 of 45 African states grows more than 3%.
Societies become aware almost from scratch, and the jump is not always conscious. A research conducted in Indonesia revealed a perception problem: many use Facebook and think they use the Internet. Or they think that Facebook is the Internet.
Explaining the potential of a smartphone is critical, said yesterday the executive director of Mozilla, Mark Surman. Define the functions of a device is the key point: today a telephone can be considered trivially a small television or rather a powerful mobile office.
There is also, of course, the question of monopolies. Today in the United States the devices are almost equally divided between the operating systems of Google, Apple and a few others. But in India Google Android it has 91% of the market.
The digital divide that is still there. Today in Africa has access to the Internet, 26.5% of the population: in the future the difference for users will be mainly on the video. Who will have a 3G or faster connection can watch video content, others will have to wait. The expansion will, however, also moderation by the price of the Network User: Today in the Philippines a data connection can cost 10% of the average salary. But the public is growing, and in fact the only mobile advertising in emerging markets will reach $ 330 billion over the next five years, according to estimates of the Jana analyst firm. The world runs, and the paradox is that the more developed part looks at the change with a little 'ill-concealed anxiety. But the connection is already in progress, and this time it's even faster.