In the recent series of events on social media marketing and online businesses, everyone is exceptionally convinced about Pakistan being a potentially promising market for IT and telecom. But is it really true or are these major companies relying completely on the number of mobile and internet users across the country? Average reports and stats are good but in the long term, there is a different side of society that needs attention for even better growth. What Pakistan is capable of doing in IT has a lot to do with the government and education sector.
IT in Pakistan is experiencing a boom, but this entire progress is taking place in the background mainly because the masses still are not aware of what can be done with the help of technology. Most of the people take technology and tech-entrepreneurship as something very technical. However, there are people using their ideas aided with technology to transform this society even when they do not have technical knowledge of programming and design – they are hiring tech professionals for assistance and actually endorsing their businesses efficiently. A lot of new start ups we see are catching up on solving real time local issues using IT apps, web and social media. There is a vast market for mobile internet users. The question is: Is everyone capable of being a part of the tech-culture as efficient users of technology being made in Pakistan?
Majority of population in Pakistan resides in rural areas and also they have low literacy rate because of which they are not fully capable of accessing technology with broader prospects. People are readily adding more value to IT and Telecom by adopting it. There is a huge traffic expected on mobile phone and basic interest usage but this can be used effectively not only for improving Pakistan’s economy but bettering the market prospects as well.
Young startups, as mentioned, are focusing on local technological solution for solving problems in the society, but this change will mostly remain accessible to a certain literate urban class. For starters, it’s great because there is a positive change at least. But in the long term, without spreading awareness – making new tech users and potential users/clients for IT apps – the tech culture will have limited users depending on urban/rural class with limited services availed.
Tech companies and entrepreneurs are making new models and there are simple incredible ideas being highlighted by events like Pakathon and Civic Hackathon; there are mentors as well; but at the end of the day, most of the ideas still need investment and material transformation. For which it is extremely important for the government to show its involvement and own ICT sector maturely.
People cannot browse online, explore multiple options on apps and become a part of social reformation unless they have basic education. The internet culture has still not been groomed in the sub-urban areas because there is more to technology than just basic reading/writing skills in English. There are private organizations that are promoting the IT culture in schools and universities which essentially should be headed by government bodies.