The Mobile Gender Gap Report 2023

More women in low- and middle-income countries are using mobile internet than ever before, but their rate of adoption has slowed for the second year in a row and a significant gender gap remains. Women are 19% less likely than men to use mobile internet and of the 900 million women who are still not using it, almost two-thirds live in South Asia and Sub-Saharan Africa, where mobile gender gaps are widest. Gender gaps in smartphone ownership and overall mobile ownership also remain relatively unchanged and stand at 17% and 7%, respectively. This slowdown in digital inclusion and the fact that mobile gender gaps are not reducing is concerning as we move to an increasingly connected world.

The Mobile Gender Gap Report 2023 explores the latest data on the mobile gender gap, the key barriers preventing women’s equal access to and use of mobile, and what is needed to close the mobile internet gender gap. It also highlights the socio-economic benefits of addressing these barriers for the mobile industry, the economy and society more broadly, and women themselves.

Findings from this report are based on results from over 13,800 face-to-face surveys across 12 low- and middle-income countries, and subsequent modelling and analysis of this survey data.

The core data from this survey is available on request. Please email connectedwomen@gsma.com.

Watch the virtual launch recording

Missed our virtual launch event? Watch the recording now and hear from Nadia Jeffrie, Insights Manager of the Connected Women programme, who shares the key findings, analysis and recommendations from the report. Plus you’ll hear from guest speakers from ITU, Jazz and Safaricom who share their reactions to the latest findings, and discuss where we should focus our efforts to address the mobile gender gap and ensure that women are not being left behind.

Mobile Gender Gap in LMICs, by region

  • Mobile ownership
  • Mobile internet usage

Click on a region to see the data

Regional data unavailable

  • Overall LMICs
  • Sub-Saharan Africa
  • South Asia
  • East Asia & Pacific
  • Middle East & North Africa
  • Europe & Central Asia
  • Latin America & Caribbean

Overall LMICs

2017
2022
44 %
61 %

Proportion of women who use mobile internet

25 %
19 %

Gender gap in mobile internet

1210 m
900 m

No. of women not using mobile internet

  • Overall LMICs
  • Sub-Saharan Africa
  • South Asia
  • East Asia & Pacific
  • Middle East & North Africa
  • Europe & Central Asia
  • Latin America & Caribbean

Source: GSMA Intelligence, 2022

Based on survey results and modelled data for adults aged 18+

  • Mobile ownership
  • Mobile internet usage

The graph shows the evolution of the mobile gender gap from 2017 to 2022, including the proportion of women who use mobile internet and the gender gap in mobile internet. Hover over the dots in the graph to see the exact percentages.

Key
Proportion of women who use mobile internet
Gender gap in mobile internet

Download previous reports and resources

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