[LINK] Re: Windows XP versus Vista
swilson at lockstep.com.au
Thu Jan 24 16:11:39 EST 2008
I was just trying to moderate the blanket remark that "It is extremely
unlikely there will [be] infrastructure [in the third world] to even run
a computer let alone have internet access".
As it stood, I thought that was a blunt over-generalisation. I think we
all need to take care in how we describe "the third world", and avoid
slipping into suggestions like: "even at a growth rate of 35% per year,
it will be decades before [Africa mobile phones] approach the
penetration rate of western countries".
Well, no. At 35% p.a., a population of 50 million phones would grow
cover all of Africa in 11 years and all of the world in 16 years.
That's way short of "decades".
David Goldstein wrote:
> You are right there are pockets of Africa with great
> telecommunications. Parts of South Africa come to mind. But a friend
> who lives in the capital of Namibia finds it difficult to get more
> than dial-up. And through mobile internet she gets a very expensive
> connection to the internet. A huge country of only two million people
> has more things on its mind than broadband access for all.
> And an article by Steven Huter and Adiel Akplogan from the University
> of Oregon Network Startup Resource Center and Regional Registry for
> Internet Number Resources for Africa in The Guardian recently (see
> outlines a lot of the problems. There are also other stories on my
> website under Digital Divide and Governance. See
> But the main issues are lack of infrastructure, the cost of a
> personal computer, limited or unavailable national infrastructure
> (power and fibre) and regulatory and political environments with
> cumbersome barriers that removed would encourage competition by
> opening up markets to engage more access providers.
> The article referred to was broadly supported by contacts in Africa.
> And yes, mobile communications are booming, but even at a growth rate
> of 35% per year, it will be decades before they approach the
> penetration rate of western countries. One thing though, electricity
> is unknown in many parts of the third world.
> ----- Original Message ---- From: Stephen Wilson
> <swilson at lockstep.com.au> To: link at anu.edu.au Sent: Thursday, 24
> January, 2008 1:51:37 PM Subject: Re: [LINK] Re: Windows XP versus
> David Goldstein wrote:
>> A lot of this talk of whether a person living in the third world
>> can use Vista misses a very vital point. It is extremely unlikely
>> there will is the infrastructure to even run a computer let alone
>> have internet access.
> This seems a rather pessimistic view of the "third world".
> They have telecommmunications. The Commission for Africa in 2004
> reported that the "number of mobile subscribers has already grown to
> over 50 million, representing over 7% of the population. The number
> of subscribers is currently expanding at around 35% a year, and is
> forecast to continue over the next few years".
> The only other infrastructure needed to run a PC would be
> which I don't think is unknown in the "third world".
> Stephen Wilson Managing Director Lockstep
> Phone +61 (0)414 488 851
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