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Friday, January 26, 2007

How to read western report: China's Net users send wrong message

This is the article from InforWorld.

Let me tell you some more about its points and you will have more understanding about China's internet.

1. China Daily, the country's official English-language newspaper, claimed Thursday that China would surpass the United States by 2010 , even though current growth rates of about 23 percent per year does not support that. In fact, Internet growth has slowed slightly since its peak in 2001 and 2002.
First, Chinadaily said: That could be a bullish prediction. The United States now has about 210 million Internet users, according to industry estimates. A research report by JP Morgan earlier this month forecast China's Internet population could hit 190 million by 2010.
Second, China's internet user number grew at 18.2%, 18.1% and 23.4% in 2004, 2005 and 2006. Let me set the average growth rate at 20% anually. In 2010, China's internet user numbers could be doubled. That means it could reach 270 million. Oh, that's about 90% of US population.

2. Beijing and Shanghai alone account for over 50 percent of the total number of users;
This can only be faked number. The total population of Beijing and Shanghai is about 30 million. How the both cities have half of the Chinese netizens that is 137 million?

3. the Xizang Autonomous Region -- the official name for Tibet -- ranked last for Internet use, with only 160,000 Internet users, 0.1 percent of China's total.
First, Tibet is one of the poorest provinces in China, and it is also remotedly located in mountainous area.
Second, Tibet has a population of only 2.5 million. That means the internet penetration in Tibet is about 7%. It is not bad at all comparing with 10% of national average and considering Tibet's economical and geographical conditions.

4. 57 percent of users surveyed stated their monthly income was 1,500 renminbi ($193) or less (over 61 percent if you include users who said they had no income). That sounds to me like high school kids, college students, or young people in their first job.
So what? young Chinese are often decisive in purchasing in their families. It is they who often make decision not their parents.

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