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China’s internet penetration rate grew to 59.6 percent

China’s scale of internet users and internet penetration rate has been growing steadily. Source: Wu Wei/CSST


China Internet Network Information Center recently released the 43rd “Statistical Report on the Development of China’s Internet Network” in Beijing. As of December 2018, the number of internet users in China had jumped to 829 million and the internet penetration rate had expanded to 59.6 percent, an increase of 3.8 percentage points since the end of 2017. The number of new internet users has increased by 56.5 million. Currently, 98.6 percent of people in China, a total 817 million, can search the internet with their mobile phones, according to the report.

The scale of basic internet facilities in China has steadily increased. The country has about 3.8 million domain names, the report said. In the past year, it has made= continuous progress in high-performance analytics and new breakthroughs in software research and development with independent intellectual property.

In 2018, China enacted the first law regulating electronic commerce, which will fuel the healthy development of the sector. As of December 2018, the number of online shopping users in China hit 610 million, with an annual growth rate as high as 14.4 percent. The report pointed out that after years of rapid advancement, the online consumption market has gradually entered the phase of quality improvement and sector upgrading. The paralleled promotion of both supply and demand is forming into a new driving force for industry growth. The report mentioned that as of December 2018, there were 583 million mobile payment users in the country. This index had achieved an annual growth rate of 10.7 percent.

Online entertainment is booming. The country has started to regulate the sector’s development. As of December 2018, the number of registered users of online video, online music and online games platforms were 612 million, 576 million and 484 million respectively. It is worth noting that the users of short video apps totaled 648 million, and its usage rate, 78.2 percent, was higher than all the above-mentioned fields. High-quality content is the core competitiveness of each platform because many internet companies have started to expand their businesses to short video and the market is becoming more mature.

The effectiveness of online government services has also been significantly improved. The data showed that as of December 2018, the number of online government service users in China had reached 394 million, accounting for 47.5 percent of the country’s internet users, according to the report. In the past year, China’s adoption of the “internet plus government service” pattern has deepened its development. Governments at all levels have put the online platforms into good use by supplying more accesses to data flow, so that people can save time running errands.

Network security has always been a concern. The report focuses on this issue, noting that the proportion of security problems encountered by Chinese internet users in 2018 has continued to decline. Nearly half of the surveyed people said that they had no network security problems in the past six months, up 1.8 percentage points in one year. In addition, the analysis on the existing relevant problems found that the proportion of the users whose internet devices suffered viruses or Trojans had significantly reduced.


This article was translated from Guangming Daily.

edited by Ma YUHONG

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