Posts about Digital Divide

In a recent conversation with Adrian Wooster, I was asked if we’re over analyzing the state of broadband connectivity. Are we spending too much time discussing the problem and not enough in solving it? I was thinking about this question again today as I researched some figures on the recently launched national broadband map. An ambitious tool that’s provoked heated discussion as to its effectiveness and how it can be used to move the state of the country’s broadband forward.

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Gather any group of telecom professionals and government ministers in a room and raise the topic of broadband access and the resulting debate will more often than not require the help of trained negotiators to diffuse. This is exactly what happened recently as the UN highlighted the condition of broadband access on a global scale.

The figures the UN released make for sober reading. In the world’s poorest countries, less than 1% of the population have access to fixed broadband and the costs for this access reach as high as 100% of monthly average incomes. This contrasts with developed countries where over 30% have access at a cost of 1%.
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On a blog post earlier this week, Yankee analyst, Benoît Felten posted a link to a new interactive map on French telecom operator Orange’s website. Although my attention is easily drawn to any form of online-based tool, this one held my attention for much longer than usual.
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