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• The Wall Street Journal has a story about the continuing evolution of the Internet, and how in some places around the world, “instead of typing searches and emails, a wave of newcomers - ‘the next billion,’ the tech industry calls them - is avoiding text, using voice activation and communicating with images. They are a swath of the world’s less-educated, online for the first time thanks to low-end smartphones, cheap data plans and intuitive apps that let them navigate despite poor literacy.” This has become such a priority that “some poor users say they are willing to pay for data even if it means forgoing consumption of things like cigarettes to afford prepaid cards. Sales of shampoo and some snacks foods have slipped for certain consumers as they put more rupees aside for their phones.”

Indeed, while some of the apps being used by these users are familiar - Facebook and Google, for example - there also are many “that are unfamiliar in the developed world, including UC Browser, MX Player and SHAREit, that have been tailored for slow connections and skimpy data storage.”
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