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Internet Users Top 500 Million in 2001.

Buffalo Grove IL, March 21, 2002-
The number of Internet users surpassed 530 million in 2001 and will continue to grow strongly in the next five years. Most of the growth is coming from Asia, Latin America and parts of Europe. By year-end 2005 the number of worldwide Internet users will double to 1.12B. An increasing portion of Internet users will be using wireless devices such as web-enabled cell phones and PDAs to go online. The wireless devices will be supplemental to PC Internet access for most users in developed countries. In countries with low Internet penetration many wireless Internet devices will be the primary Internet access devices.

The wireless Internet was a disappointment in 1999 and 2000 due to unrealistic expectations in W. Europe and USA. However, the wireless Internet has lived up to expectations in Japan and Korea. Similar success is expected in other regions, but on a slower schedule.

Year End 2001 2004 2007
Internet Users (millions) 149 193 236
Wireless Internet User Share 4.5% 27.9% 46.3%
Internet Users (millions) 533 945 1,460
Wireless Internet User Share 16.0% 41.5% 58.8%
Internet Users (millions) 115 357 612
Wireless Internet User Share 34.8% 50.9% 60.4%
W. Europe      
Internet Users (millions) 126 208 290
Wireless Internet User Share 13.9% 49.6% 67.0%

"The wireless Internet will take off when always-on service and useful content for the small displays of wireless devices are available," says Dr. Egil Juliussen, the author of the report. "The rapid take off will be due to millions of "dormant" or web-enabled cell phones that are only used for voice services. As the wireless Internet user experience improves, an increasing portion of the dormant web phones will become active wireless Internet devices."

These are some of the results from a new market research report by eTForecasts. The report compiles and forecasts the number of Internet users for over 50 countries and major regions of the world and includes projection for 2002-2007.

eTForecasts publishes market research reports for the PC, PDA, information appliances and Internet industries.

  Updated April 22, 2002