This is the second in a series of blogs about internet access in Indonesia.
A well-functioning digital economy requires widespread access to high-quality internet. Although internet use in Indonesia has nearly quadrupled over the last decade, every second Indonesian adult remains unconnected.
In addition, almost all internet users Indonesia connect through mobile devices. Although mobile broadband (3G, but now increasingly 4G/LTE) is the most widely used internet service in Indonesia, it is not on par with fixed broadband with respect to capacity, quality of service, high bandwidth performance, and cost-efficiency. Distance learning efforts during the COVID-19 pandemic recently highlighted the limitations of mobile internet as millions of students and teachers across Indonesia found their mobile data plans inadequate and prohibitively costly for high bandwidth applications.
Such limited access to high-quality internet prevents the population from unlocking its productive capabilities to fully reap the benefits of a digital economy and points to two key challenges: how to make fixed broadband internet access universal and increase internet quality.