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Mobiles will outnumber people by 2014: report

business Updated: May 13, 2013 13:59 IST

M-powering! Mobile phone subscriptions will outnumber the world population by the end of next year, according to a UN agency report.

According to the International Telecoms Union prediction, the cell phone subscriptions will pass a whopping seven billion early in 2014.

Currently, there are 6.8 billion mobile phone subscriptions, while the population stands at 7.1 billion people in the world, 'BBC News' reported.

More than a third of the global population are online, the ITU World in 2013 report also found.

The Commonwealth of Independent States, the alliance of countries formerly in the Soviet Union, is believed to have the highest mobile penetration with 1.7 subscriptions for every person, the report said.

Africa has the least, with 63 subscriptions per 100 inhabitants, it said.

"Every day we are moving closer to having almost as many mobile cellular subscriptions as people on Earth," said Brahima Sanou, director of the ITU Telecommunication
Development Bureau.

"The mobile revolution is 'm-powering' people in developing countries by delivering ICT applications in education, health, government, banking, environment and
business," said Sanou.

The report also found that 2.7 billion people, almost 40 per cent of the world's population, are online.

Europe has the highest penetration (75 per cent), followed by the Americas (61 per cent). Asia has 32 per cent of its population online, Africa 16 per cent.