Internet Population in Rural India to Increase by 98 Percent

Date:   Tuesday , May 03, 2011

The total number of active Internet users in rural India will increase by 98 percent from 12.1 million (December 2010) to 24 million by December 2011, says a research conducted jointly by Internet and Mobile Association of India (IAMAI) and IMRB. The research also pin points that the internet user category will grow by 96 percent to reach 29.9 million by December 2011 from 15.2 million in December 2010.

The study found three reasons for this exponential growth. The main reason is the growing awareness level about internet in the rural areas. The report says that about 69 percent of the rural population is aware of internet as opposed to the 16 percent projected in last year’s report. The access to internet in rural India has become easier making it the second reason for the growth of rural internet users; now 82 percent of the rural India has access to internet from locations inside a 10 kilometer radius. Finally entertainment is driving the adoption of internet in rural areas with entertainment, communication and instant messaging being the main purposes for access. 41 percent of the claimed internet users had used the internet for watching, downloading and listening to music or uploading or downloading pictures while 32 percent also used it for email, chat and communication.

With majority of India still living in the rural areas, this exponential growth in the rural internet using population presents a huge opportunity for internet service providers.