New Delhi: The number of Internet users in India crossed the 200 million mark, reaching 205 million in October, and is expected to reach 213 million by the end of this year, according to a report released by the Internet and Mobile Association Of India (IAMAI) and IMRB International on Wednesday.
India remains the third largest Internet user-base in the world, behind China with 300 million and the US with 207 million, said the report.
The number of Internet users in urban India stood at 137 million in October and is likely to touch 141 million by December, while that in rural areas reached 68 million in October and is estimated to cross 72 million by the year-end.
According to the report, there were 110 million mobile Internet users in October, of whom 25 million were from rural areas. The number of total mobile Internet users is estimated to reach 130 million by the end of December, with rural users hitting 27 million.
“There has been a 57% growth in the number of CIUs and a 32% growth in the numbers for active Internet users (AIUs),” said the report. “An increase of 40% in the number of community service centres (CSC) has played a big part in bringing about this change.”
“It is estimated that the number of AIUs in rural areas will grow by 20% to 49 million by December 2013 and by 37% to 56 million by June 2014,” said the report.
The report noted that in urban India, there were 130 million CIUs in June, a figure that is expected to reach 141 million by December and 158 million by June 2014. Urban AIUs currently stand at 108 million and are poised to grow at 11% over the next six months to reach 136 million by June 2014.
Rajan Anandan, chairman, IAMAI, said “The Internet in India took more than a decade to move from 10 million to 100 million and only 3 years from 100 to 200 million. From here on, we can hope to develop a robust Internet ecosystem with a multitude of local and global players and a thriving Internet economy. Internet is now, clearly, mainstream in India.”