The Associated Press reports that six in ten people around the world now have cell-phone subscriptions, signaling that mobile phones are the communications technology of choice, particularly in poor countries, according to a U.N. report published March 2. By the end of last year, there were an estimated 4.1 billion subscriptions globally, compared with about 1 billion in 2002, the International Telecommunication Union said. Fixed line subscriptions increased at a much slower pace, to 1.27 billion from about 1 billion over the same period. "There has been a clear shift to mobile cellular telephony," the agency said, noting that developing countries now account for about two-thirds of cell phones in use. In 2002, less than half of mobile subscriptions globally were in the developing world, it said. In addition, internet use more than doubled worldwide. An estimated 23 percent of people on the planet used the internet last year, up from 11 percent in 2002. Poor countries still lag far behind on internet access, with only 1 in 20 people in Africa going online in 2007–the most recent year for which firm figures were available. The 106-page report also ranked countries according to how advanced their use of information and communications technology, or ICT, is. Sweden came first, followed by South Korea. The United States was 17th out of 154 nations…

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