How Asia is transforming the internet

Low Lai Chow

The growth of the internet over the last 17 years has been nothing short of astonishing, Karim Temsamani, Google's head of Asia Pacific, observed during a keynote session at the CommunicAsia 2013 summit. "But really, it is the growth over the last two or three years that is the most exciting for Asia, because Asia is leading the world," he told delegates.

"The fact is it is not the technologies. It is not the new platforms. It is not even the new social networks that are rallying the change. It is the people in this region. The people are driving the change. They started doing different things with their mobile devices. They started expecting different things. Asia is now showing the rest of the world what the internet can really do."

Currently, two-thirds of the global population lacks access to the internet, and half of the world's offline population lives in just six Asian countries, including India, China, Bangladesh, Indonesia and Pakistan.