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An estimated 740 million people worldwide will be using broadband services by 2014, it has been reported.

Research conducted by Point Topic indicates that web service take-up will increase most notably in emerging countries over the next five years.

As reported by ISPreview, the study found that Eastern Europe and South-East Asia will be the biggest growth areas.

Point Topic noted that emerging nations will account for 320 million broadband lines – 43 per cent of the global total – within half a decade.

The company claims that most broadband-mature nations are now approaching saturation point in terms of connectivity, with growth predicted to be just 4.6 per cent over the next five years.

But according to ISPreview, such countries will see a major shift to next-generation broadband during this time period.

Last month, Adam Afriyie, Shadow Minister for Science and Innovation, told eGov Monitor that businesses need faster broadband speeds to compete on an international scale.

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