Huawei's third annual edition of its Global Connectivity Index (GCI) revealed that average national connectivity levels are 5 per cent higher than they were in 2015, indicating that progress is being made globally in the investment and deployment of information and communications technology (ICT).
However, the overall improvement also masks a more mixed picture at country level. Twelve countries improved their positions, while four experienced a drop. The top three developed economies are the United States, Singapore and Sweden. The leading developing economies are the United Arab Emirates in 19th place, Qatar in 21st and China in 23rd position.
One of the gainers this year was the UK, which moved up one place from last year to take 5th position.
The 2016 GCI essentially measures how nations are progressing with digital transformation based on 40 indicators that cover the supply, demand, experience, and potential of five technology enablers: broadband, data centres, cloud, big data and the Internet of Things (IoT).
The 50 countries assessed by GCI 2016 also account for 90 per cent of global GDP and 78 per cent of the world's population.
Kevin Zhang, president of Huawei corporate marketing, noted that while economies across the world are accelerating the deployment of digital technologies, different strategies should be adopted by developing compared to developed markets.
"Nations that are in the early stages of economic digitisation should develop long-term technology plans that include broadband and data centres to reap the benefits of enhanced growth. Developed economies wanting to capitalise on their frontrunner ICT status should invest more in cloud, big data, and IoT technologies and solutions to experience the full benefits of a digital economy," he said.
GCI 2016 also found that investing in digital infrastructure correlates to GDP gains "because it increases economic dynamism, efficiency, and productivity." However, the extent to which GCI influences GDP varies with the stage of digital transformation in each country.
- see this Huawei release
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