A spike in Internet penetration in the next five years could mean that India will have almost as many persons going online in 2015 as the US.
According to the Boston Consulting Group's report, The Internet's New Billion, India will have an estimated 237 million Internet users by 2015, as against just a million more for the United States, while China will provide the largest mass of users with 650 million. This period, the report said, could see Internet penetration almost triple by 2015, covering nearly 19 per cent of the country's population. The growth can be considered quite phenomenal since the number of Internet users in India in 2006 was pegged at approximately 49 million.
There will be a concurrent change in terms of personal computers being used, with the number expected to quadruple to cover 17 per cent of the population by 2015. But the significant bulge could be in the use of cellphones, with three-fourth of Indians using mobiles by 2015.
The report also provides an interesting insight into Internet usage patterns in India.
Nearly 95 per cent of those online check email, while nearly three-fourth also use the web for job hunting.