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Rural internet users in India to reach 45 mn by December 2012

According to the latest I-Cube Report on
Internet in Rural India by the Internet and Mobile Association of India (IAMAI)
and IMRB, the number of claimed internet users in rural India is expected to
reach 45 million by December 2012. Presently, rural India has 38 million
claimed internet users and 31 million active internet users. 

According to the latest I-Cube Report on
Internet in Rural India by the Internet and Mobile Association of India (IAMAI)
and IMRB, the number of claimed internet users in rural India is expected to
reach 45 million by December 2012. Presently, rural India has 38 million
claimed internet users and 31 million active internet users. 

The penetration of claimed internet users
in rural India has grown from 2.6% in 2010 to 4.6% in 2012, a CAGR of 73%. On
the other hand, the penetration of active internet users has grown from 2.13%
in 2010 to 3.7% in 2012. 

The report further states that mobile
phones are fast emerging as an important point of internet access in rural
India. As of June 2012, there were 3.6 million Mobile Internet Users in India,
a growth of 7.2 times from 0.5 million in 2010.

Community Service Centres (CSC) and Cyber
Cafés are the major point of access for internet users in rural India. 57.7% of
the internet users accessed internet through this common user points. A
significant 12% of the internet users access internet on their mobile phones.

Entertainment is the primary driver of
internet use in rural India. 75% of rural users use internet for entertainment
while 56% use it for communications Users like to access Music, Videos and
Photos for entertainment. There is a growing interest amongst the rural
constituents seeking information on education. 81% of claimed internet users
seek information pertaining to school / university and exam centres.

Dr Subho Ray, President of IAMAI, said, “This is
just the tip of the iceberg, in the next two years, a combination of affordable
smart phones, optic fibre backbone and local language content is likely to
change the beat all projections of internet growth in rural areas.”

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