The Information Society in Spain 2012: ICT as the engine of economic recovery
The report “The Information Society in Spain”Corresponding to 2012 leaves no room for doubt: we are increasingly digital although there are still subjects in which to improve the grade. A whole avalanche of data to start the year processing them because they exist in relation to the connectivity to the network, the frequency of use, the technology used, the impact of ICT in various fields and sectors or referring to each of the Autonomous Communities , among others.
It is difficult to choose a headline among so much relevant information … The one in the dossier that has been delivered to the media states that “six million Spaniards are already permanent digital communicators and they live connected to the network 24 hours a day ”. Without a doubt, it highlights the degree of maturity of the digital society in our country. This is also reflected in the fact that high-capacity networks, the “highways” on which everything circulates, are increasingly key and fiber optic connections increased almost 200%.
More figures: in Spain we have the higher penetration of smartphones among the 5 main countries of Europe with 63.2%; more than 43% of users connect to the Internet through mobile phones (210% more than in 2011); there has been an exponential growth in applications: 140%, with 2.7 million apps downloaded per day … And, personally, I love the fact that the age group that grows the most in terms of Internet access is the one that brings together people between 55 and 64 years old, which go from 37.7% to 43.7%. It would be very good to exemplify the phrase of Otto Benavides this week during his visit to Spain: “being a digital native is an attitude, not a condition”. Although, as a black point, the gap above this band continues to be serious and – another aspect to improve – greater public-private collaboration is also necessary, as Borja Adsuara tweeted, to boost the adoption of electronic commerce by SMEs .
But back to optimism, which is attitude, César Alierta, president of Telefónica, stated in the presentation of the report that the TIC they have always grown: in times of expansion and crisis, and which are key due to the economic and social impact they have, thus because they make possible a more connected, more informed society with greater access to knowledge. Spain ended last year with 70% of the Internet population, a million users more than the previous year and this makes us a better prepared country to put the stage of Economic recovery that is to come.
Alierta also referred to the important role of digital telecoms, such as Telefónica por el investment effort in the deployment of key technologies such as LTE and fiber optics.
That ICTs in times of crisis provide solutions to get ahead was something that Javier Nadal, executive vice president of the Fundación Telefónica also emphasized and highlighted that new forms of financing are being opened such as crowdfunding and new avenues for employment, such as app development companies, of which 84% have generated jobs in 2012.
Another macro trend that Nadal cited from the report is that we are living a second phase of the Internet, in which we have gone from single access to multi-access, it is ubiquitous and multi-device with an extraordinary role of mobile. And he mentioned four digital realities:
- The user has achieved the appropriation of the technology: he establishes the device from which he accesses the Internet as well as the place from which he does so depending on the activities he wishes to develop. In addition to rationalization: the use of what one wants to consume is consolidated, with respect to possession. There is a cultural change with access to content through the cloud.
- Digital alternatives are imposed, only two strongholds remain: in the use of books, which is preferred in the physical format, and in shopping, where the real experience prevails over the virtual one, although this is expected to change in 2013.
- The e-Administration get moving.
- The smartphone becomes the center of digital life.
The full report on the Information Society in Spain 2012 is a valuable document not only as a barometer of the current situation, but also because it allows identifying cultural changes and future trends. For example, fiber optics to the home will ensure a more connected future and the big data It will allow companies to derive value from the data explosion with improved efficiency, new services and even from becoming a new source of employment.