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Internet Society Study Points To Slow Internet Growth In Africa
MONROVIA, August 30 (LINA) – Internet access and availability are not enough to get people online, says a new Internet Society study released Tuesday at the African Peering and Interconnection Forum (AfPIF) taking place 30 August - 1 September in Tanzania.
The “Promoting Content in Africa” report reveals that while significant improvements have been made in Internet infrastructure, most notably in mobile networks, Internet adoption rates are slowing in many countries because users lack compelling reasons to connect.
According to the study, content and services are the main factors in making the Internet desirable, especially when the subject matter is relevant and in a language that users can easily understand.
A lack of local content and services is affecting the number of new online users in Africa. In Sub-Saharan Africa in particular, local language content is key to bringing new users online, as many are not comfortable reading in English or French.
“Promoting Content in Africa” outlines the barriers to the development of local content and offers recommendations to improve local content availability and distribution.
In the Sub-Saharan countries studied by the Internet Society, the majority of international and locally developed content is hosted outside the country, typically overseas.
This results in slow Internet speeds and higher access costs. The majority of sites are hosted in Europe and the U.S. Hosting content locally is key to making the Internet faster and more affordable for users.
Previous editions of AfPIF have been held in Kenya, Ghana, South Africa, Morocco, Senegal and Mozambique. Last year’s event featured 232 participants from 57 countries and an online participation of 978 people in 77 different countries.
The Internet Society with its principled vision and substantial technological foundation promotes open dialogue on Internet policy, technology, and future development among users, companies, governments, and other organizations.
Working with its members and Chapters around the world, the Internet Society enables the continued evolution and growth of the Internet for everyone.