India's digital journey reached a new milestone with 54.3 per cent of its population using internet, which is 70 basis points higher than the estimated global ratio of 53.6 per cent, at the end of 2019. The measure already reached a half-way mark by June end with 50.5 per cent, or 50.5 internet subscribers per 100 population. The current share places India far ahead of all the developing economies as 47 individuals were estimated to be using the internet per 100 inhabitants, at the end of 2019, in this region.
However, in developed countries, approximately 86.6 per cent of the population were using internet. The International Telecommunication Union (ITU) estimated that 53.6 per cent of the global population, or 4.1 billion people, used the internet in 2019. The share stood at 51.4 per cent across the globe in 2018 while it was 46.1 per cent for India.
As per the recent data released by the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India, there were 718.74 million internet subscribers as on December 2019 that have grown by 4.5 per cent over the previous quarter. There were 450.3 million urban and 268.4 million rural internet subscribers in the country. It comprised of 661.94 million broadband internet subscriber base and narrowband (internet access with a capacity of less than 512 Kbit/s in one or both directions) internet subscriber base of 56.81 million.
The broadband internet subscriber base increased by 5.84 per cent while the narrowband internet subscriber base declined by 8.67 per cent from 62.20 million at the end of Sep-19 to 56.81 million at the end of Dec-19. Out of the total internet subscribers, 96.8 per cent subscribers are using mobile devices for access to internet services and wired internet subscribers are only 3.11 per cent of the total internet subscribers.