In terms of personal value, few of us would argue just how significant the internet is as a vital component of our daily lives. It also holds huge economic value, playing a crucial role in contributing to the success of many businesses. Ask anyone exactly how much the internet is worth, however, and most of us wouldn’t have a clue. Here are some enlightening expert thoughts on the matter.
The internet of things
John Chambers, CEO of American network systems giant Cisco, believes that the internet will contribute to $19 trillion in economic benefit over the next 10 years. More specifically, the ‘internet of things’ will be the key catalyst for creating economic value. The internet of things refers to using a wide range of connected devices that communicate with each other over the internet and offer smart capabilities. Chambers argues that the internet of things is likely to have five to 10 times the impact on society over the internet itself. In 2010, around 10 billion devices were connected to the internet. By 2020, this number is likely to soar to over 50 billion devices, further increasing the worth of the internet.
A report by McKinsey Global Institute believes that defining the internet’s worth involves looking at how much it has contributed to economic growth. According to McKinsey the internet is a vast mosaic of economic activity, from millions of daily online transactions and communications to smartphone downloads. In a study conducted by McKinsey, the internet was found to make up 3.4% of overall GDP in the economies of the G8 nations. The internet economy is now larger than sectors such as agriculture and energy.
The report also ascertained that the internet is a vital element of economic progress, with businesses needing to sharpen their focus on the opportunities that the internet offers. Those businesses that don’t yet have an online presence should begin to make this their priority. Having an expertly designed website, from professionals can allow a business to exploit the internet for growth and increased sales, especially if they offer an ECommerce facility.
When calculating the worth of the internet, all studies have highlighted its significance in creating jobs and how this impacts on the economy. According to the Business Insider the internet represents over 20% economic growth in the past five years, and for every job that it destroys, 2.6 new jobs are created.
Value of the web
Google has also facilitated a study, ‘Value of the Web’, to quantify how much value the internet has created. What the study highlights is that working out the internet’s worth is incredibly tricky. Value is much more than just assessing the contribution to GDP, and even this is hard to fully quantify. The internet also impacts differently on different countries, with its influence being more prominent in some countries than others. Cloud computing, for instance, has contributed to 240,000 jobs in the UK, but only 69,000 jobs in Spain. Either way, the huge contribution that the internet has made to society and the economy as a whole can not be underestimated.