Arab ICT Use and Social Networks Adoption: Report

Despite the political turmoil that had swept up the region over the past two years, the Arab world continued to make significant progress in the adoption of information and communication technology (ICT) in 2011, taking big strides towards enhancing ICT infrastructure and performance. Driven by the GCC's remarkable mobile penetration figures, mobile phone subscriptions in the Arab world nearly matched the region's population – to reach 346 million as of end 2011. The Internet sector in the Arab region also continued to make notable progress, as Internet users totaled almost 96 million by of end 2011. This report presents the current status of ICT use and penetration in the Arab World. It also discusses Arab social networks and their adoption and Arabic digital content. This is of particular interest as the Arab world was slow in its adoption of social networking, but the rise of political activism and the subsequent uprisings witnessed in several countries in the region prompted the explosion of sites such as Facebook, Twitter and YouTube on the Arab scene.

Abdul Kader Kamli
© Madar Research & Development, 2012