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Economy

Visualizing the State of Global Internet Connectivity

Two maps illustrate disparities in access across the world.
An internet cafe in Ankara, Turkey.
An internet cafe in Ankara, Turkey.Umit Bektas/Reuters

Internet access continues to expand across the globe. According to the second State of Connectivity report compiled by researchers at the Facebook-led Internet.org ​initiative and released in February, the number of people using the internet jumped from 2.9 billion in 2014 to 3.2 billion in 2015, placing the percentage of connected individuals at 43 percent worldwide.

But this top-line understanding of progress masks wide discrepancies between the more-developed and still-developing worlds. At the end of 2015, 82 percent of the population in the developed world used the internet; in the developing world, that number is much lower—just 35 percent.