//India among top 10 with 17 m net users

India among top 10 with 17 m net users

[ Saturday, May 06, 2006 12:37:14 amTIMES NEWS NETWORK ]

NEW DELHI: Here's to the coming of e-age of India. A latest survey reveals that India figures among the Top 10 nations with the highest population of Internet users above the age of 15. With an online population of 16.713 million users, India is ranked tenth — behind countries like US, China, Japan and South Korea.

However, India's online population is higher than countries like Russia, Australia, Spain and Brazil, points out the survey by America's comScore Networks. According to the survey, four Asian nations — China, Japan, India and South Korea — represent nearly 25per cent of the worldwide online population (or 168.1 million users). This is about 11per cent larger than US, which has the largest online population of 152 million users. China is placed second with a 74.72 million online population. The survey excludes traffic from Internet cafes and access from mobile phones or PDAs.

But considering India's population of 1.1 billion, Internet penetration is still among the lowest in the world. Government, over the past couple of years, has been pushing hard to spread Internet and broadband so that e-governance, e-commerce and distance learning pick up, especially in smaller towns.

According to the survey, some 694 million people worldwide over age 15 are now using the Internet, about 14per cent of the total population in this age group. Third on the list was Japan with 52.10 million users, followed by Germany.