Belgium lag behind in mobile data use, ranks high in efficiency

Thursday, 12 October 2017 18:04
Belgium lag behind in mobile data use, ranks high in efficiency © Belga
Belgians use much less mobile data than people in other OECD countries, according to the latest report by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) on digital economic prospects.
However, Belgium had a higher rate of digital technology use in certain activities than the average OECD country, especially in areas such as banking services, training, cloud storage of information and social networking, making it one of the countries with the highest performance levels in this area.

Monthly mobile data use by Belgians in 2016 averaged 0.86 gigabytes per person, way below the OECD average of 1.89 giga. The country with the highest average rate of mobile data use was Finland, with 10.59 Giga per month per person, followed by Lithuania, with 8.21 Giga, the OECD reported.

Where being able to use the world wide web is concerned, at least 97% of the people of Denmark, Iceland, Japan, Luxemburg and Norway had access to the Internet, as against 60% or less in Mexico and Turkey. Internet users represented more than 95% of young people aged 16 to 24 years, but fewer than 63% of people in the 55-74 age group had access.

Digital technology continues to make impressive strides forward, as Internet infrastructure improves and the use of digital tools gains ground. “Digital transformation is not uniform in all countries, companies and households, so it does not create the same opportunities for everyone,” noted Angel Gurría, Secretary General of the 35-member OECD.

His organization blames public policies which “have not evolved at the same pace as digital innovation and the transformation of economies and societies fueled by the big technological groups”.

However, the prices of high-speed Internet continue to drop, the OECD stresses. The average cost of a monthly subscription of 200 Gigabytes dropped by 15.4% between June 2013 to June 2016, going from US$43 to US$37 respectively.

Andy Sanchez
The Brussels Times
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