17 May is the World Telecommunication and Information Society Day
The aim of this day is to raise awareness on how the use of new technologies drives socio-economic and sustainable development. This year the emphasis is on the theme Big Data for Big Impact
– how to turn complex, often unstructured data into important and usable information that can be used when key decisions are being taken.
In the digital age users of information-communication technologies (ICT), the Internet for private or business purposes generate every minute enormous amounts of data. At the same time the number of smart devices that are connected to the Internet and generate data keeps increasing. The generated big data have the following characteristics:
- a significant volume: vast amounts of data generated over time; variety:
- different formats of data, either structured or unstructured (e.g. text, sensor data, activity logs, coordinates, etc.);
- velocity: the high speed at which data are generated, become available and change over time.
Who generates big data and when are they generated?
With the usage of the Internet, social networks, etc., big data are generated
In the first quarter of 2016, 64% of persons in Slovenia aged 16–74 used the Internet every day or almost every day, namely 94% of 16–24-year-olds and 20% of 65–74-year-olds.
The Internet was most often accessed in Slovenia via mobile or smartphone (by 55% of persons aged 16–74), followed by access via portable computers (53%). 51% of persons accessed the Internet via mobile or smartphone away from home or work (on the go).
In Slovenia 66% of persons aged 16–74 used the Internet for sending or receiving e-mail, 65% for finding information about goods or services and 38% participated in social networks. A quarter of persons uploaded self-made photos, videos, music, text on the Internet.
Mobile big data
An important source of big data is data about the mobile network users. In the fourth quarter of 2016 there were 2,385,757 mobile network users in Slovenia (their share increased by 24% in the period of nine years); 79% of them were private and 21% of them business users. Mobile network subscribers predominated among the private users (71%); 29% were prepaid mobile network users. These users generate large amounts of data that are among others an important source of data on daily mobility of the population.
Enterprises generate and collect data in their business operations
In Slovenia in 2016 computers with Internet access were used by 51% of persons employed in enterprises with at least 10 persons employed, while 19% of persons employed were provided by enterprises with portable devices able to connect to the Internet via mobile telephone networks.
83% of enterprises had a website and 46% a profile on social media, where they published different kinds of data. Enterprises generate and collect in their daily electronic business operations large amounts of data. In 2015, 33% of enterprises used the ERP software package for sharing information between different functional areas and 29% the CRM software package (Customer Relationship Management).
In 2013, 13% of enterprises used Business Intelligence Software (BI), the purpose of which is to transform data into useful information for the purpose of business analyses.
Analysis of big data in enterprises
Analysis of big data allows for making better business decisions. In 2015, 11% of enterprises with at least 10 persons employed analysed big data in Slovenia. Big data were most often analysed by enterprises in information and communication activities (35%), followed by enterprises in supply of electricity, water, sewerage activities (30%).
Enterprises most often analysed their own data from smart devices or sensors, e.g. data from machine to machine communications, smart devices or sensors, Radio Frequency Identification Tags (RFID), etc. (7%), followed by data generated from social media and geolocation data from the use of portable devices (4%) and other big data sources (1%).
In 90% of enterprises that analysed big data these data were analysed by their own employees (incl. those employed in parent or affiliate enterprises) and in 24% by external service providers.