The global Internet network surrounding everything, and everyone has already turned into an inseparable part of human life. This local network created several decades ago, and more precisely in 1960 in the United States, in a short time formed into a large system consisting of independent networks and covered the whole world.
Today, the Internet is a useful platform for states, businesses, communications, healthcare, education and other fields of activity. The Internet network formed and developed during the Third Industrial Revolution has already become one of the main pillars of digitalization and information exchange during the Fourth Industrial Revolution (Industry 4.0) and plays an important role in achieving sustainable development of states and society.
In 1958, U.S. President Dwight Eisenhower created the Department of Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (ARPA) in response to the launch of the world’s first artificial satellite in 1957 by the USSR. A few years later, this institution, for the first time in the world, manages to lay the foundation of the modern Internet. Later, the organization begins to be called DARPA. In 1960, the agency was engaged in the construction of a computer network, and in 1967 the ARPANET plan was born. For the first time, information on the ARPANET network was transmitted on October 29, 1969, by a professor of computer science, Leonard Kleinrock of UCLA, to the second point in the network, the Stanford Research Institute. Later, October 29 is marked as World Internet Day.
In 1984, the US National Science Foundation created the NSFNET (computer network of the US National Science Foundation) based on the Department of Defense ARPANET. In 1992, unlike ARPANET, the number of small networks connected to this open network increased, exceeding the mark of 7,500 networks, 2,500 of which are outside the United States. In subsequent years, collaboration with the telecommunications industry led to the formation of the modern Internet and the closure of ARPANET in 1990.
The number of people and devices connected to the Internet is increasing
Today, Internet use is growing every day. According to data provided by “Internet World Stats” (an international Internet resource that studies information on the use of the Internet in the world, population statistics, social media and the Internet market and presents this information), the total population of the world as of June 30, 2019 is 7 billion 716 million people and the number of Internet users in the world is 4 billion 536 million. If you translate these numbers into percentages, Internet users makeup – 58.8% of the world’s population.
The number of Internet users in the Asian region is 2 billion 300 million people (55%), in Europe – 722.6 million (10.7%), in Africa – 522.8 million (17.1%), in North America – 327.5 million (4.7%), in the region of Latin America and the Caribbean – 453.7 million (8.5%), in the Middle East – 175.5 million (3.3%) and 28.6 million in the region of Australia / Oceania (0.5%). According to the data provided by the resource, the number of Internet users in our country is – 7 million 991 thousand people, which is identical to 79.8 percent of Internet users. Based on the report of the International Telecommunications Union (ITU) – “State of Broadband Report 2018”, Azerbaijan ranks first among the CIS countries in the distribution and coverage of the Internet (79%).
At the moment, the Internet is developing rapidly, both in terms of broadband and in terms of mobile Internet. Due to the laying of both underwater (along the bottom of the oceans and seas) and terrestrial fiber-optic cables, continents and countries are connected, and connectivity is increased. Billions of US dollars are spent on infrastructure development by operators, new Data Centers (Data Processing Centers – Data Centers) of TIER 3, and TIER 4 types are being built. The increase in the creation of content in the world in comparison with each previous year, the extreme increase in the volume of this content and as a consequence of this , increase in the volume of the global data sphere (According to the calculations of IDC and Seagate organizations, the size of the global data sphere will increase by 5 times and reach 175 zettabytes by 2025) leads to the creation of new Transoceanic fiber-optic trunk cables with higher bandwidth (tens of terabit of information per second). Learn more information about the internet content providers companies.
The information transmission capabilities of terrestrial and underwater trunk fiber optic cables, of course, differ. In newly laid cable networks, this volume is much larger. For example, the MAREA submarine cable commissioned in 2018, stretching 6605 km from the US state of Virginia to the city of Bilbao in Spain, is capable of transmitting information at a speed of 208 terabits per second. The information transmission capabilities of terrestrial and underwater trunk fiber optic cables, of course, differ. In newly laid cable networks, this volume is much larger. For example, the MAREA submarine cable commissioned in 2018, stretching 6605 km from the US state of Virginia to the city of Bilbao in Spain, is capable of transmitting information at a speed of 208 terabits per second. The information transmission capabilities of terrestrial and underwater trunk fiber optic cables, of course, differ. In newly laid cable networks, this volume is much larger. For example, the MAREA submarine cable commissioned in 2018, stretching 6605 km from the US state of Virginia to the city of Bilbao in Spain, is capable of transmitting information at a speed of 208 terabits per second.
Map of existing submarine cable routes.
Note that the first intercontinental cable network (Transatlantic Telegraph Cable Network) was carried out between Ireland and Canada (Newfoundland) in 1858 and made possible telegraph communication between the two continents. According to Telegeography, a telecommunications market research and consulting company, there are currently more than 370 submarine cable networks, with a network length of 1.2 million km. For information, we will inform you that a project is currently being implemented to lay a fiber-optic trunk cable line and along the bottom of the Caspian Sea. The project, which is called the Trans-Cape Highway, is being implemented by AzerTelecom LLC, the Internet backbone operator, connecting Azerbaijan with the international Internet network within the framework of the Azerbaijan Digital HUB program implemented by the company (turning Azerbaijan into a digital center for the Caucasus, CIS countries, Central and South Asia, the Middle East and surrounding regions). The project involves the laying of trunk cable lines along the bottom of the Caspian Sea between Azerbaijan and the countries of Central Asia to form a digital telecommunications corridor – the Digital Silk Way between Europe and Asia.
Today, technological development also affects the development of the mobile Internet. The GSMA organization showed in its report “The Mobile Economy 2019” that in 2025, the number of mobile Internet users will increase from 3.6 billion in 2018 to 5 billion. The number of Internet of Things (IoT) devices is a device system connected to the network interacting with each other and transmitting information) in the period from 2018 to 2025, it will increase from 9.1 billion to 25.2 billion. According to the report, over this period, the income from the Internet of things will also increase 4 times to 1.1 trillion dollars.
Future of the internet
Today, the rapid development of the Internet and the relevance of cybersecurity issues make everyone wonder what the future of the Internet will be. What changes may the Internet undergo in the next decade? Of course, it is difficult to answer this question unequivocally. However, experts put forward their various forecasts.
For example, the author of the book “How the Internet Was Formed: From Netscape to iPhone,” writer Brian McCullough, says that in the future we will see several versions of the Internet. That is, we will see a shared Internet. In the future, Russia and India will have their versions of the Internet, like those of China and the West. Firms for successful business will be faced with a choice depending on countries and segments.
Professor of the University of Maryland – Sarah Ann Oates, however, notes that in the future, the Internet audience will be divided into different types and we will see national platforms created by states. People will distance themselves from global media platforms and will only communicate with people close to them in their interest group.
Associate Professor of New York University, Nicole Staroselski, suggests that the main part of Internet infrastructure – terrestrial infrastructure (Data Centers, terrestrial cables, offices of Internet service providers) will suffer from climate change in the future. The climate crisis will affect the consumption of Internet traffic. As a result, the high-speed and stable Internet will be available only to a wealthy segment of the population.
Of course, the opinions of the expert society differ. But with one thought, the majority agrees that in general, communication services in the future will be faster and will cover everyone. Global traffic will increase. The number of submarine cables, as well as Internet Exchange Points in the world (IXP – Internet Exchange Point), will increase. Note that in 2017, there were 421 Internet traffic exchange points. In 2018, this figure reached 528. The number of connected services using the new 5G technology will also increase in the future, and this technology will allow the transfer of information in large volumes. By 2025, 4 out of 5 Internet connections will be via smartphone. By 2020, more than 1/5 of the global market will use 5G technology and $ 244 billion will be spent on the network.
In general, in the coming years, the issues of digital transformation, the use of artificial intelligence, the protection of personal data, protection against cyber attacks on the Internet, as well as the issues of connecting to a network of a population without access to the Internet and Internet governance will be relevant.