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Nigeria Ranks 137th in ICT Development Index



  • Nigeria Ranks 137th in ICT Development Index

It appears there has not been any significant upward shift in Information and Communications Technology (ICT) development in Nigeria as the country ranked 137th out of 175th countries surveyed on technology growth in 2016.

According to the International Telecommunications Union (ITU) in its ‘Measuring the Information Society’ report on ICT Development Index (IDI) made available to The Guardian on Monday, Nigeria, which ranked 137th last year still remained on the same spot in 2016. Though, the IDI in 2015 was 2.48 per cent, which slightly climbed to 2.72 in the outgoing year.

The IDI is an index published by the United Nations, International Telecommunication Union (ITU), based on internationally agreed information and communication technologies (ICT) indicators. The IDI is based on 11 ICT indicators, grouped in three clusters: access, use and skills.

According to the report, South Korea, which ranked number one in 2015, with 8.78 per cent IDI penetration maintained the same position in 2016, even with higher IDI of 8.84 per cent penetration.

The other nine countries in the top 10 ranking are:
· Iceland (8.83 per cent);
· Denmark (8.74 per cent);
· Switzerland (8.68 per cent);
· United Kingdom (8.57 per cent);
· Hong Kong (8.46 per cent);
· Sweden (8.45 per cent);
· Netherland (8.43 per cent);
· Norway (8.42 per cent); and,
· Japan (8.37 per cent).

The United States of America is ranked 15th with 8.17 per cent penetration.

With Seychelles ranking 87th and 5.03 IDI penetration from 85th position and 4.77 per cent in 2015, the country leads other African countries. South Africa is next with 5.03 per cent and 88th position from 4.70 per cent in 2015.Tunisia is next. It had a slight IDI growth of 4.83 per cent in 2016 from 4.49 per cent it had in 2015, which placed it at 95th position.

Commenting, the Director Telecommunication Development Bureau (BDT), ITU, Brahima Sanou, said this year’s results showed that nearly all of the 175 countries covered by the index improved their IDI values between 2015 and 2016.

He stressed that during the same period, stronger improvements were made on ICT use than access, mainly as a result of strong growth in mobile-broadband uptake globally.

This, he said, allowed an increasing number of people, particular from the developing world, to join the information society and benefit from the many services and applications provided through the Internet.

“This year, for the first time, the report also shows countries’ rankings according to their improvement in IDI value. The results show strong improvements in performance throughout the world; a number of middle income developing countries in particular are reaping the benefits of more liberalised and competitive ICT markets that encourage innovation and ICT uptake across all sectors,” he stated.

He explained that despite these encouraging developments, there is need to focus on the countries that are among the least connected in the world, “urgent action is required to address this persistent digital divide if we want to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) enshrined in the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. For example, the report shows that in some low-income countries, between 20 and 40 per cent of people still do not own a mobile phone and that the gender gap in mobile phone ownership is substantially higher.”

The report observed that there is a strong association between economic and ICT development, with the least developed countries at a particular disadvantage.

According to it, the average IDI value for developed countries (7.40) is 3.33 points higher than that for developing countries (4.07), although developing countries improved their IDI value more than developed countries.

There is also a strong association between the least connected countries, countries that are in the bottom quartile of the IDI 2016 distribution, and least developed countries. Indeed, the bottom 27 countries are all least developed countries, and the gap in IDI values between these countries and higher-performing developing countries continues to widen.

CEO/Founder Investors King Ltd, a foreign exchange research analyst, contributing author on New York-based Talk Markets and, with over a decade experience in the global financial markets.


Elon Musk Promises to Reward Best Carbon Technology $100 Million



elon musk

Elon Musk Promises to Reward Best Carbon Technology $100 Million

The Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Tesla Inc. has announced that he will donate $100 million in reward for the best carbon capture technology.

The richest man in the world disclosed this in a tweet on Thursday.

“Am donating $100M towards a prize for best carbon capture technology,” Musk tweeted. “Details next week.”

Elon R Musk gained +$375 million in the last 24 hours to take his total gain in net worth this year to $32 billion and $202 billion total net worth.

Musk, who worth just about $27 billion in January 2020, has risen through the rank to top the world’s richest billionaire index.

The $100 million would be Musk’s largest known donation to date and represents around 0.05 percent of his net worth.

In 2012, Musk signed “The Giving Pledge” to join the list of billionaires that promise to donate half of their fortune to charity in their lifetime or in their wills.

Musk worth just $2 billion when he signed the pledge.

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YouTube Suspends Trump Channel




YouTube Suspends Trump Channel

Google-owned YouTube on Tuesday temporarily suspended President Donald Trump’s channel and removed a video for violating its policy against inciting violence, joining other social media platforms in banning his accounts after last week’s Capitol riot.

Trump’s access to the social media platforms he has used as a megaphone during his presidency has been largely cut off since a violent mob of his supporters stormed the Capitol in Washington DC last week.

Operators say the embittered leader could use his accounts to foment more unrest in the run-up to President-elect Joe Biden’s inauguration.

“In light of concerns about the ongoing potential for violence, we removed new content uploaded to Donald J. Trump’s channel for violating our policies,” YouTube said in a statement.

The channel is now “temporarily prevented from uploading new content for a ‘minimum’ of 7 days,” the statement read.

The video-sharing platform also said it will be “indefinitely disabling comments” on Trump’s channel because of safety concerns.

Facebook last week suspended Trump’s Facebook and Instagram accounts following the violent invasion of the US Capitol, which temporarily disrupted the certification of Biden’s election victory.

In announcing the suspension last week, Facebook chief Mark Zuckerberg said Trump used the platform to incite violent and was concerned he would continue to do so.

Twitter went a step further by deleting Trump’s account, depriving him of his favorite platform. It was already marking his tweets disputing the election outcome with warnings.

The company also deleted more than 70,000 accounts linked to the bizarre QAnon conspiracy theory, which claims, without any evidence, that Trump is waging a secret war against a global cabal of satanist liberals.

Trump also was hit with suspensions by services like Snapchat and Twitch.

The president’s YouTube account has amassed 2.77 million subscribers.

The home page of the Trump channel featured a month-old video of Trump casting doubt on the voting process in November’s presidential election, and had logged some 5.8 million views.

On Tuesday, an activist group called on YouTube to join other platforms in dumping Trump’s accounts, threatening an advertising boycott campaign.


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Analysts Predict 1,137% Earnings Per Share Growth for Shopify’s Full Year 2020




Analysts Predict 1,137% Earnings Per Share Growth for Shopify’s Full Year 2020

While the pandemic has devastated countless businesses, it has provided a major boon for eCommerce platform Shopify.

Shopify’s stock rallied by 169.9% in 2020 compared to the industry’s 26.6% growth. As of mid-December 2020, according to the research data analyzed and published by Finnish site Sijoitusrahastot, it had a 90 RS rating, which means that it had outperformed 90% of stocks during the year.

Based on the Zacks Consensus Estimate, its Q4 earnings per share (EPS) are set to jump by 188.37% to $1.24 while its sales will grow by 78% to $899.2 million. For the full year 2020, analysts project a massive 1,137% jump for the Shopify EPS.

Shopify Merchants Sell Over $5.1 Billion on Black Friday, Cyber Monday

Since Shopify went public in 2015, its stock has risen over 40-fold to more than $1,200 at the end of December 2020. Between 2016 and 2019, it skyrocketed by over 1,400%.

The eCommerce platform’s earnings for Q1 to Q3 2020 grew at an average of 552%. That was well above the 101% three-year average. In Q3 2020, its revenue nearly doubled from $390.6 million to $767.4 million.

Earnings in Q3 2020 rose from a net loss of 29 cents to $1.13 per share. Gross Merchandise Volume (GMV) soared by 109% reaching $30.9 billion, compared to 46% in Q1 2020 and 119% in Q2 2020. For the first nine months of 2020, there was a revenue increase of 82%.

For the first time, Shopify’s GMV surpassed that of eBay in Q2 2020, doing it again in Q3 2020. It claims to have a 6% share of the US market, higher than eBay’s but lower than Amazon’s 37%.

During the Black Friday Cyber Monday weekend, merchants on the Shopify platform sold goods worth $5.1 billion. Compared to 2019, this marked a 76% uptick and set a new record. Comparatively, independent businesses on Amazon sold goods worth $4.8 billion. The number of buyers on Shopify increased by 50% year-over-year (YoY) to 44 million during that weekend.

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