Internet is the short form of "International Network". To merely say that it has brought the world closer will be an understatement. It is worth-mentioning here that the Internet has actually existed since 1969. But, it came to limelight when Tim Berners Lee invented the World Wide Web in 1989 and it was subsequently implemented in 1991. The global recognition of the Internet marked a new beginning - the beginning of the Information Age. Over the years, the Internet has become a powerful platform for speedier flow of information. This new-age technological powerhouse has given a new dimension to knowledge sharing and has made possible instantaneous access to information on any or every subject under the sun! Today, we can find information on virtually everything, thanks to the Internet! Let us get a glimpse of some of its major offerings.
Business gets a new address - The World Wide Web
Internet has given the field of business and trade a new face by taking it online. Undoubtedly, online business is thriving on the net. The Corporate World can reach out to a wider base of customers, through their websites. The number of active shoppers online is progressively on the rise and the business world is tapping this fact for the better. Locating resources like shops, outlets, businesses offering specific products and services has become easier through Internet. Apart from speed, reliability and an extensive reach, it also provides the buyers as well as the sellers with a greater range of products and services to choose from. It also eliminates the geographical limitations of trade and exchange. Thus, it is proving to be a fairly profitable mode in the business arena.
Advertising and marketing have also experienced a radical makeover, all thanks to the Internet and its enormous coverage. A new product can be introduced to a mass audience within a matter of a few seconds through this high-speed medium. Apart from garnering the attention of the consumers, sellers also get the all-important feedback through various programs and polls. Looking at its colossal potential, Internet has become a highly viable advertising medium, too.
Internet has made the tendering process smoother, safer and speedier. More secure and quicker filling up of tenders and execution of orders is now possible through e-tendering. Organizations using the new age methods undeniably enjoy a striking edge over the organizations making use of the conventional methods.
Shopping on mind? Just log on to the Internet
With the advent of Online Shopping, people can now shop from the comfortable confines of their homes or offices. They no longer need to visit the shops or the market every time they need to purchase something. The online shopping portals also come up with various offers which add to the simmering competition that gives the buyers an edge because they can compare and choose the best deal for themselves. They get a preview of what they are going to get in return of their hard-earned money not just through pictures but also the detailed descriptions available along with the listings.
Online shopping is flourishing due to many factors. It is not only for the high level of convenience, but also because of the broader basket of alternatives available. Competitive pricing and access to reviews are some of the other major reasons. Shoppers no longer have to mull over finding a parking place for their vehicles. The market on the web is open 24 hours a day all through the year. The shopaholics couldn’t have asked for more. Apart from frequent shoppers, people who are extremely busy also find respite through online shopping. All this and more goes a long way to make the life of a consumer much easier.
The consumer attitude has undergone a massive shift towards non-store shopping due to its numerous advantages and of course increased exposure to technology. The World Wide Web has evidently established itself as the new-age shopping channel.
Online study, training & education – A boon for Students
Internet has ushered in new opportunities for students, too. Now, they can obtain quality education from the precincts of their homes. Whenever they need to clear some doubts, they can now look up to the Internet for help. Moreover, they can also contact their teachers and literally talk to them. So the Internet also serves as a digital classroom and that too of huge dimensions and well endowed with digital apparatus for competent learning. The educational websites not only give the students study material but also present them with practice tests so that they can prepare better for their examinations. Yet another interesting part is that as soon as their results are out, the students can know the details with the click of the mouse! The Web is filled with unlimited opportunities for the new-age student.
Banking at a click – Online-Banking
The sphere of banking has also immensely benefitted by Internet. Today, the transactions are completed within seconds and are arguably safer and more secure. The customers no longer need to stand in queues for their requirements. Online banking also saves paper and hence, conserves nature. It has brought the Bank closer to those people who live in remote places where a real Bank has not been built, yet. Banking even on holidays is another key advantage of E-Banking. Online banking can also be used to pay bills. One can also view one's transactions and transfer money online. In other words, Internet in the form of E-Banking has made the financial lives of people much easier to deal with.
Letters @ a click
Internet has revolutionised the area of communication by introducing e-mail and chatting. People exchange messages-whether small or large, important or casual, in a much quicker way than ever before. 'Chats' makes their tête-à-tête even livelier. People living across the world are immensely benefitting from this new-age medium of communication. People can remotely connect to their friends online through Social Networking websites like Facebook and Orkut. It is pretty evident that the World Wide Web has brought people living in different parts of the world closer. Childhood friends meet again and connect immediately on this virtual platform. So it won't be an exaggeration to call the web a digital meeting place. Further, it has emerged as a cool and efficient platform for networking. The mammoth success of the social networking websites go a long way to demonstrate the popularity and significance of Internet in the field of social networking. With the advent of Internet, the world has shrunk and has emerged as a global village.
Latest Softwares on the go
Internet has made it simple to download advanced software from the web without any hassles. Upgrades of existing software to boost work efficiency are also available online which goes a long way to increase proficiency of the new-age professionals. Software professionals are a happier lot today because this fast medium has made their lives easier than ever before and is yielding sparkling results at the workplaces. Office databases are better maintained because seamless data and real time updates power them up. This leads to enhanced levels of productivity and is surely a morale booster.
Web Conferencing-The Internet also provides real-time services such as web radio and web casts that can be accessed from anywhere. In fact, the introduction of Web conferencing has given a new dimension to face to face interactions. Meetings can now be held between individuals sitting at different parts of the globe through Web-conferencing. Distance is no longer a factor today for the corporate world thanks to this technologically advanced feature brought to you by Internet. Nowadays, it is used extensively to conduct live meetings, presentations, online workshops and even tutorials.
Voice over Internet Protocol or VoIP provide for the delivery of voice communications and multimedia sessions over Internet. Faster exchange of information also aids build the platform for better work scenarios. This in turn acts as an impetus to creativity and advancement, in general.
News and Live Entertainment on the web
The Web can be termed as a multimedia interface that facilitates broadcast of text, pictures, audio, and video together. People come to know about the various happenings all over the world as soon as they take place. E-papers, e-magazines, blogs and many similar portals give the readers the latest 'scoop' right on the screens of their PCs. People no longer have to wait for the morning newspaper for their daily dose of news; they receive it momentarily. No wonder, the Internet has made the mode of Entertainment richer and more enjoyable. It has become quite successful in a very short span of time owing to its powerful reach and potential. Downloading games, listening to their favourite tracks or just surfing the Web are only a few of the many modes of entertainment people enjoy on the web. Internet users can access the latest books, songs, movies, etc online. Viewers get to watch live sport events too. So, if you have missed the match you wanted to watch desperately, don't despair because you can easily catch up with it right on your computer screen on the web!
A final word
On the whole, Internet has unquestionably arrived with a generous number of advantages and is helping broaden horizons, the world over. It is doing its bit to make the world a smarter place as frequent and reliable resource sharing and discovery is brought to you by this new-age technological innovation. This being a low-cost and instantaneous medium of sharing ideas, knowledge and skills has made collaboration trouble-free. But, like any other scientific innovation, it should be used ethically for the welfare of the society. Considering its manifold favourable aspects, the Internet can be described as an 'engine of empowerment' that possesses the power to create healthy 'virtual communities'.