Ajit Mohan, MD, Facebook India believes that massive growth can be unlocked when women participate in the Internet economy.
A considerable part of every company’s efforts should now go into breaking the gender imbalance in the Internet space, he added.
He was speaking on the first day of the second edition of the startup event ‘Huddle Kerala 2019,’ in Thiruvananthapuram.
“Although we have brought a broad and dramatic number of people online in a very short period of time, public data suggest that only 30-35 per cent of them are women,” he added. “A lot of our energy should go into breaking gender imbalance. We have to think about the barriers that limit women from coming online.”
“When he spoke to people around the country, a couple of things threw up. One is in terms of safety. Women are fundamentally concerned about their safety when they come online. The other is privacy,” he added. “All this suggests that tech companies should put breaking of gender imbalance on their agenda, and they should keep this mind when designing products.”
Mohan is also of a view that video is an excellent enabler for bringing more people online.
“If you look at the Internet evolution in India in the past five years, especially in the last three years, there has been an explosion of access to affordable 3G, triggered by the disruptive model of Reliance Jio followed by other telcos. What it did was that in a short period, it moved the number of people, who have access to mobile broadband, from 10-15 million to more than 400 million. Today, we have 4G. Now, we need to find ways to bring Internet access to more people across the country. Video can be a great enabler here,” he observed.