Digital inclusion

Digital inclusion has a direct impact on communities, allowing them to build fairer, more prosperous and sustainable societies

 

Digitalization offers people a whole world of possibilities. That's why Telefónica has set out to expand our telecommunication infrastructures and develop innovative solutions that let us to bring connectivity and digital services closer to everyone.

This digital inclusion must take place regardless of location, digital literacy, economic status or user capabilities.

 

José María Álvarez-Pallete, Chairman & CEO: “We are leaders in fiber in Europe and Brazil. There is more fiber in rural areas of Spain than in many European capitals”

> DISCOVER THE IMPACT OF HIGH-SPEED BROADBAND DEPLOYMENT IN RURAL AREAS OF SPAIN (TECHNICAL REPORT)

 

 

Promoting Universal Access

At Telefónica we are working in these areas to promote connectivity and make sure no one gets left behind:

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Network infrastructure

Connectivity is our main ally in reducing the digital divide and contributing to the progress of the communities where we are located. To further this vision, at Telefónica we are deploying innovative, more efficient networks, investing more than €5 billion per year.

The effort made to expand 4G networks, we have reached a coverage of more than 90% of the population in the four main countries in which we operate. We have also made progress in deploying our fibre not only in urban areas, but also in rural ones, and we have expanded our 5G networks in our large markets.

In addition, we are also making a special effort to promote the digitalisation of small and medium-sized companies. We also plan to cover 100% of the rural population in Spain with fibre optic networks by 2025 and we have created a partnership in Germany to drive the deployment.

We are working towards reinventing the way networks are designed, deployed, operated, maintained and marketed to continue extending our mobile Internet coverage. And we do it through an open approach, collaborating with cross-sectoral stakeholders: Internet companies, local operators, entrepreneurs and public administrations.

Accesibity

At Telefónica we try to minimise the barriers to accessibility in digital solutions: we are working to facilitate access to our basic services (television, devices, applications and web portals) for people with disabilities.

In recent years, we have launched several programmes that have made us an international benchmark in the sector. Thus, Movistar+ is the first private television in the world to offer content for the hearing and visually impaired through
3 accessibility systems:

  • Sign language embedded in the scene.
  • Subtitles for the deaf: distinguishes the dialogue by colour and subtitles the sound effects.
  • Audio description: provides a narrative description of the scenes, respecting the dialogue and the original soundtrack.

Affordability

As part of our efforts to bring connectivity to the entire population, we are aware of the importance that the cost of the service has for a large part of the population.

Although the costs of adopting fixed broadband, and especially mobile broadband, have fallen significantly over the last decade, we continue to work on new business models that allow us to offer increasingly affordable rates. Examples include pay-per-use mobile service, exclusive broadband bundles (charge per day) for low-income customers, and service bundles for small businesses and entrepreneurs.

Digital skills

At our Foundation and Telefónica Digital Education, we work on training people in digital skills and competences needed to access the Internet and digital services and increase their chances of getting a job.

In addition, initiatives such as GURU and Client Schools are making it easier for our customers to access digital experiences and helping them to take full advantage of the possibilities of technology.

Relevant services and content

At Telefónica we develop mobile financial services, health solutions (e-health), Big Data applications to assess pollution in cities or manage epidemics, and Smart-Agriculture applications that contribute to the socio-economic development of local communities.