The thirst for social media is “one of the biggest drivers of people coming online for the first time”, according to Simon Kemp, founder and CEO of marketing consultancy Kepios.

In 2018, nearly a million people went online for the first time every single day, propelling the world’s internet population now to almost 4.4 billion.

“We see that the desire to use social media is actually one of the main things that brings people online for the very first time,” he said at the Digital in 2019 Social Breakfast Singapore event, adding that the world is already at about 58% internet penetration.

Internet penetration: Asia’s markets remain diverse

“South Korea and North Korea are at either ends of that spectrum,” Kemp observed. “Internet is still completely blocked for the most part in North Korea, but we are getting up to 95% penetration for the internet in South Korea and in Brunei.”