80% of Afghan Women Have Access to Mobile Phone
According to a recent USAID survey, some 80 percent of women in Afghanistan have regular or occasional access to mobile phones. Of the 80 percent, 48 percent have bought their own phones and an additional 32 percent have at least some access to a shared phone owned by a family member or a neighbor. Of the women who own a mobile phone, 67 percent acquired the phone in the last two years. Furthermore, among those who obtained a phone in a last year, 64 percent were under the age of 25. The research also found that fear of technology is not a barrier: 94 percent of the women without phones say they are not intimidated by mobile technology. Some 53 percent of women surveyed without a phone cite the lack of permission from family members as the major obstacle to acquiring a phone and 49 percent cite costs as prohibitive. The respondents say the drawbacks of mobile phone ownership include the financial burden (54%) and their potential infringement on personal privacy (41%).