Nearly three in every four Bangladeshi mobile internet users feel like they are going to use their devices more in the next one to two years, reveals a Telenor Asia study.
The study titled "Digital Lives Decoded", conducted among 8,000 mobile internet users across eight South and Southeast Asian countries – Bangladesh, Indonesia, Malaysia, Pakistan, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam – on the occasion of Telenor's 25th anniversary in the region, also found nine in every ten use their phones at least half of the day, while one-fifth never be without their phones.
It reflects the digital transformation that had its unforeseen pace during the pandemic is still going the same in the country, said officials of Grameenphone, a Telenor concern in Bangladesh that is widely leading the mobile phone market.
Grameenphone Board Chairman and Telenor's Asia Head Jorgen C Arentz Rostrup at an event in the capital on Tuesday presented the key findings of the study of peoples' digital life nowadays.
Nine in every ten Bangladeshis believe that mobile phone usage helped improve the quality of their lives and female are ahead of their male counterparts in believing so, finds the study.
Mobile connectivity is helping inclusion and removing the digital divide as two-thirds feel it increased the mass people's access to education while more than half found the same when the question of access to healthcare comes.
The majority of female users are thankful for mobile connectivity as it helped improve their decision making, supported their ways of employment and income, while the rate is a little lower at around half among male mobile phone users.
In terms of sustainability, the majority praise mobile connectivity as they believe digital access is supportive of their environment-friendly lifestyle, while most of them feel it is important to slash the usage of paper, thinking about how to reduce waste and save energy.
Grameenphone Chief Executive Officer Yasir Azman said, "To live our purpose of empowering societies, Grameenphone has been striving to minimise the digital divide through connectivity since its inception. I am glad to see that our efforts are paying off as connectivity has been instrumental in ensuring equal opportunities for all."
Catching up with the technological changes, digital security and privacy, however, was found to be the biggest reasons for the Bangladeshi respondents' concerns.
Of Bangladeshis, 97% are concerned to some extent that they are not catching up with the technological changes, while the regional average is 85% and younger users are feeling the need for improving their digital skills more.
97% expressed their concern about their device's digital security and privacy.
"As mobile connectivity becomes even more fundamental to our daily lives, lacking the right skills and awareness, including to navigate safety and privacy issues, or being off the grid can severely restrict access to education, healthcare, economic and employment opportunities," said Jorgen C Arentz Rostrup.
"We need to better understand digital gaps, and how to bridge them, as well as the carbon footprint of our online habits, as we work together to create a future where mobile connectivity is empowering and sustainable for all," he added.
The report publishing event also included a panel discussion among Yasir Azman, UNDP Deputy Resident Representative in Bangladesh Van Nguyen, Child Health Research Foundation's Director and Scientist Senjuti Saha.
Asif Naimur Rashid, the chief business officer of Grameenphone, moderated the session.