There are 302 million internet subscribers in India of which 94% are mobile internet users and 6% wired internet (IAMAI, 2016). 28 million out of 400 million Internet users are school-going children (IAMAI, 2015). While India’s rate of Internet access is still relatively low compared to that of other middle-income countries, it is quickly catching up. Most of the growth in Internet access is driven by mobile Internet use.
Little reliable information is available on children’s access to the Internet. While less than 10 per cent of schools in Bihar, Assam and Jharkhand have personal computers (PCs), virtually all schools in Kerala and Chandigarh have PCs.
Digital divide: Major disparities exist in Internet access due to socioeconomic differences, geographic coverage and gender. While 60 per cent of urban dwellers have access to the Internet, only 15 per cent are online in rural areas. The digital divide is equally stark between men and women. In urban areas, women make up one third of Internet users, whereas in rural areas only 10 per cent of Internet users are female. Virtually all urban middle-class men of working age now have Internet access through smartphones, while almost all poor rural women are offline. Many poorer and rural users continue to use basic feature phones for communication and entertainment. The patterns of Internet use also vary between rural and urban areas. While urban users are increasingly going online for communication, social networking, shopping and ticketing, rural use is still predominantly for entertainment.
For more info Download UNICEF India Child Online Protection in India Report (September 2016)
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