International Internet Day is marked annually on 29 October. The day commemorates the anniversary of the first message that was sent between two computers on 29 October 1969 through ARPANET, the predecessor of the Internet. Since then, technology has become an indispensable part of our lives.
The first message exchange through the network was to programmer Bill Duvall at Stanford Research Institute by UCLA professor Leonard Kleinrock and his student and programmer Charley Cline. The duo attempted to send the word “login” as the first message. However, the system crashed after they wrote the letters l and o, resulting in the first-ever message sent on the network being the word “lo”.
The word “login” was sent an hour later by the programmers.
Since then, the Internet has transformed our lives in a monumental way, making it unthinkable to imagine a world without it. From smartphones and social media to cyber security, the network is present everywhere.
This International Internet Day, here’s a look at Internet access and speed in India:
― The number of active Internet users in the country is expected to rise by 45 percent from 2020 to 2025, resulting in 900 million active Internet users in the country, according to news reports. The spike in users will be driven primarily by increased consumption in rural India.
― Internet penetration is highest in Maharashtra, Goa and Kerala while it is the lowest in Bihar, Chhattisgarh and Jharkhand.
― Of the country’s active internet users, about nine in 10 cases access the network daily, spending an average of 107 minutes on it.
― While a divide in terms of Internet infrastructure does exist between rural and urban sections of the country, the ratio of female to male active Internet users in both rural and urban India is roughly the same. In urban India, 43 percent of active Internet users are female while 57 percent are male. For rural India, the ratio of active Internet users is 42 percent female and 58 percent male users.
― India ranks 122nd globally in terms of mobile Internet download speed as per data obtained in July this year. The country’s mobile download speed was 17.77 Mbps and upload speed was 5.09 Mbps, with latency in mobile Internet at 47 ms. The speeds are in sharp contrast to the global average of 56.74 Mbps, and global upload speed of 12.61 Mbps.
― In terms of fixed-line internet speed, India ranks 68th, with an upload speed of 56.47 Mbps and a download speed of 60.06 Mbps.
― Furthermore, in terms of usage, about 96 percent of users in India use the internet for entertainment purposes, while 82 percent use it to access social media platforms. About 90 percent use it for communicating with others, while around 45 percent use the network for online transactions.