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Internet Association Releases Economic Report Estimating Size Of US and Global Internet Economy

BECKERMAN: “We now have a clearer picture of the internet economy than ever before.”


Washington, DC – Internet Association today released its first economic policy white paper authored by IA Chief Economist, Dr. Christopher Hooton. The paper, entitled “Measuring The Internet Economy,” provides a meta-analysis of the size of the US and global internet economies and provides new estimates for the mobile and app economy.

“We now have a clearer picture of the internet economy than ever before,” said Internet Association President and CEO Michael Beckerman. “Dr. Hooton’s work lays the groundwork for a broader, more robust conversation about the internet and its critical role in our economy and daily lives.”

“We’re just beginning to scratch the surface when it comes to research on the internet economy,” said Internet Association Chief Economist Dr. Christopher Hooton. “This paper demonstrates the internet’s profound role in the national and global economy and I’m confident that it will spark a deeper level of policy conversation.”

Internet Association conducted a comprehensive review of prior studies estimating the size of the global and US internet economy and also provides an estimate for the size of the US mobile and app economy. Key findings include:

  • The Internet sector is an economic powerhouse. A range of studies and methodologies show that it is a major economic sector, rivaling the auto industry in size, and that its contributions to GDP are growing rapidly.
  • Traditional economic classification systems are outdated and need to be updated. We need to start thinking of the internet as an economic sector and develop metrics that better reflect its unique characteristics.
  • When we start to apply more innovative thinking to the sector we can gain more insights. Some simple ‘connecting of the dots’ from other analysis demonstrates that mobile internet and app services likely contribute between approximately three percent of US GDP.

To read a two-page summary of the report, click here.

To read the full report, click here.