Lot needs to be done towards digitisation: Telecom Secretary

Greater Noida, April 21 (IANS) The pace of digitisation is impressive but still a lot needs to be done, Telecommunications Secretary J.S. Deepak said here on Thursday.

Speaking at the 2nd edition of the Global Exhibition on Services, organised by the commerce department, SEPC and CII at the India Expo Centre and Mart here, he, citing a recent survey bringing out how internet is the innovation with the most transformational impact, to impress how the growth of smart phones, especially availability of cheaper phones, will boost the use of data services, open up new markets and boost e-commerce.

Deepak also mentioned the flip side. “People with no access to internet or smart phones will get more and more marginalised thus widening the digital divide. This will not only lead to greater asymmetry in information, but also asymmetry in opportunity,” he said, adding that three areas that needed focus to bridge this divide – connectivity, language and digital illiteracy – and government and industry must work together to address these.

About the second challenge, language, he said while most mobile communication at present take place in English but by January 1, 2017, mobile devices will be enabled for English, Hindi and one vernacular language.

Simultaneously, technology-enabled language conversions are also underway to enable people to access data in different languages.

On the issue of digital illiteracy, he defined a digitally literate family as one where at least one person in the household can use a computer or mobile app, and said the National Digital Literacy Mission is expected to boost digital literacy in a big way.

Bridging the digital divide will have far-reaching benefits, socially and economically, he added.

–IANS

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