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Drowning in Data? World Governments Summit navigates a booming digital sea

Sat 03 Feb 2024    
| 2 min read

Dubai: In the near future, our world will be flooded with information, creating a data deluge. By 2025, experts predict that the data created within a single year could fill 181 million libraries. This digital era, where the internet connects over two-thirds of the global population, is shaping our lives in profound ways.

The upcoming World Governments Summit (WGS) is diving into this data-centric landscape, addressing crucial questions about the future. With its theme “Shaping Future Governments,” the summit explores the opportunities and challenges posed by the increasing reliance on data.

According to a report by Statista, a platform specializing in data and business, the total volume of data worldwide is expected to reach 181 zettabytes by 2025, indicating a significant 24% growth from the estimated 147 zettabytes by the end of the current year. This surge in data is driven by the increasing number of internet users, which reached 5.3 billion by the end of the previous year, representing 65.7% of the world’s population.

The role of data is transforming societies and economies, with nearly every sector utilizing data for flexibility, innovation, and competitiveness. Engaging in economic or humanitarian activities without data is becoming impractical. The digital world has become a fundamental pillar of the information society, shaping lifestyles and influencing how consumers access goods and services.

Statista’s report outlines the exponential growth of global data volume from 2010 to 2025. In 2010, it was around 2 zettabytes, rising to 120 zettabytes in 2023. The International Data Corporation predicts that the data volume from Internet of Things (IoT) devices in 2025 will exceed 90 zettabytes.

Despite this massive volume, only 10% of the data is analyzed and utilized. Engineer Raif Al Ghouri emphasizes the importance of decisions based on updated data, noting that only a fraction of internet data is meaningful.

In one internet minute, millions of messages, emails, and texts are sent globally. Asia has the largest number of internet users, with over 2.93 billion people. The ownership of data is concentrated in tech giants like Amazon, Facebook, and Google, contributing to their success.

As we move forward, global spending on information technology is expected to reach US$5 trillion in 2024, reflecting the increasing significance of data in our interconnected world.

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