Colombia Seeing Progress in Internet Penetration, but Still Faces Hurdles

Despite the high broadband penetration rate, there are many more barriers yet to be dismantled by the government on its way to promote digitalization.

Colombia

About 67% of households in Colombia now have access to the internet, according to a study by the country’s ICT ministry. The survey includes 8,830 people, aged between 16 and 70 years, living in different regions of the country.

About 97% of Colombians use the internet for communication, 78% entertainment, 66% information, 44% training, 33% work, 26% transactions and 22% knowledge.

However, despite the high broadband penetration rate, there are many more barriers yet to be dismantled by the government on its way to promoting digitization.

Cyber threats are growing rampantly, according to David Luna, Colombia’s minister for information technology and communications, who urged businesses to put in a place a strategy to safeguard their data.

Furthermore, of the residents with no access to internet at home, 48% say they cannot afford the cost of the service, while 26% do not consider it necessary at all.

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Thanks to Vive Digital, a social inclusion program, there has been a dramatic rise in the number of people accessing wireless networks. Today, more than 70% of Colombians own a smartphone and are gaining easy access to the web.

Considering the report, laptop is the second most used electronic equipment in Colombia, followed by desktop (38%), smart TV (32%), and tablets (23%).

Colombia’s high-tech sector is the third largest in Latin America, with US$2.5 billion in annual revenue. The country’s economic prospects have brightened significantly after the government successfully persuaded FARC rebels to lay down their arms and join the mainstream society.

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