Since the late 90s, those of us living in the United States have become accustomed to the Internet. If we need to research something for a school project, we do not really have a need to go to the library anymore as we can simply surf around on Google until we find the statistics and quotes we need. As business people, we can quickly find out where the market is headed and what kinds of features potential customers would like to see included in the next product release. And, everyone in between uses the Internet for everything from researching the next car they want to purchase to purchasing products to connecting with friends and distant relatives through social media.
However, there are many countries, as hard as it may be to believe considering how much we take the Internet for granted in America, that are not using the Internet. In fact, in 2012, just 35 percent of the world’s citizens had Internet access. The number has crept up to 38 percent during this year- low in percentage, but it is still fairly high in numbers when you consider how many people are in the world.
Erich Schmidt projected, via his Google+ account, that everyone in the entire world would be using the Internet by the year 2020. He said that this would take the current number of Internet users from two billion to five billion, which would be truly incredible. Not only would that make the Internet even better for research and learning about other cultures for general use, but imagine what that could do for businesses.
While Schmidt’s prediction of everyone in the world being Internet users by 2020 is cool, it may be a little too optimistic unfortunately. When you think about it, those of us in America are paying a pretty substantial amount of money each month for the Internet. Sure, 20, 50 or even $100 may not seem like much money to people like us who are spending three times that on other bills without thinking twice about it, but we also have to consider how much even $20 per month could buy for someone in a third-world country. Those who cannot currently afford to feed themselves let alone their family will probably think twice about putting up even $20 for the slowest connection.