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8153.0 - Internet Activity, Australia, Sep 2004  
Previous ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 18/02/2005   
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NOTES


INTRODUCTION

The Internet Activity Survey (IAS) is a census which collects details on aspects of Internet access services provided by Internet Service Providers (ISPs) in Australia. This publication contains results from all identified ISPs operating in Australia as at 30 September 2004.



DATA QUALITY

Estimates for data at the state/territory level are derived from data provided for POPs (Point Of Presence or servers). In recent cycles, changing access technologies, infrastructure and operational arrangements have been impacting on the quality of the data at the POP level. As a result, data presented at the state/territory level in Table 1.2 should be considered only as indicative measures of the distribution of Internet activity at the reference date and not changes over time.



CHANGES TO COLLECTION FREQUENCY AND TIMING

The previous issue of this publication notified of a change in frequency of the IAS from biannual to annual following the completion of the September quarter 2004 collection. While this decision has not been reversed, the change from biannual to annual frequency will now occur following the conduct of the March quarter 2005 collection. The annual collection will continue to measure changes in the structure of the ISP industry and the number of Australian households and organisations obtaining access to the Internet through ISPs.



COMMENTS

Comments and suggestions for both survey content and this publication are welcome and should be addressed to the Director, Innovation & Technology Business Statistics Centre, GPO Box K881, Perth, WA, 6842.



ROUNDING

Where figures have been rounded, discrepancies may occur between the sum of the components and the total. Averages have been calculated using unrounded data.



INQUIRIES

For further information about these and related statistics, contact the National Information and Referral Service on 1300 135 070 or Diane Braskic on Perth (08) 9360 5241.


SUMMARY OF INTERNET ACTIVITY FINDINGS



HIGHLIGHTS

  • At the end of September 2004, total Internet subscribers in Australia numbered over 5.7 million. This was an increase of over 520,000 (10%) from the end of March 2004 and followed a slight increase (0.2%) recorded for the six months to the end of March 2004.
  • The large growth (51%) in non dial-up subscribers from 861,000 at the end of March 2004 to 1.3 million at the end of September 2004 drove the increase in overall subscriber numbers. Non dial-up subscribers represented almost 23% of total Internet subscribers in Australia at the end of September 2004. This was the highest proportion of subscribers recorded for non dial-up technologies since the inception of the survey in September 2000.
  • Most of the growth for non dial-up was in the household subscriber sector with an increase of 58% in household non dial-up subscribers from the number recorded at the end of March 2004. The number of household non dial-up subscribers at the end of September 2004 was 979,000 or over 75% of total non dial-up subscribers.
  • The number of dial-up subscribers recorded at the end of September 2004 was just over 4.4 million. This was a small increase (2%) from the number recorded at the end of March 2004.
  • There were 687 ISPs supplying Internet access to 5.7 million active subscribers at the end of September 2004. This was a decrease of 7 ISPs over the six month period from the end of March 2004. Changes influencing the numbers of ISPs varied from new Broadband-only ISPs entering the industry to a number of takeovers and mergers. There were 10 ISPs with over 100,000 subscribers at the end of September 2004.
  • Data downloaded by subscribers during the September quarter 2004 increased significantly (72%) to 11,004 million MBs from the 6,409 million MBs downloaded during the March quarter 2004. Non dial-up subscribers accounted for 84% of the total data downloaded, reflecting the much faster download speeds available with non dial-up technology.
  • Digital Subscriber Line (DSL) was the predominant access technology used for non dial-up Internet services with over 63% of total non dial-up subscribers being connected using this means. There were 549 ISPs (80% of total ISPs) providing Internet services using DSL access technologies at the end of September 2004.
  • Using the definition currently adopted by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) to define broadband ( “an 'always on' Internet connection with an access speed equal to or greater than 256kbps”), there were 1,290,000 broadband subscribers at the end of September 2004, an increase of 55% from the end of March 2004.
  • The majority (87%) of Australian Internet subscribers used monthly, quarterly or annual plans to access the Internet at the end of September 2004. Hourly access plans were the next most dominant means of accessing the Internet with 12% of subscribers.

Internet Activity Summary, Australia

2002
2003
2004
September Quarter
March Quarter
September Quarter
March Quarter
September Quarter

ISPs(a)(b)
Very smallno.
102
110
153
176
171
Smallno.
254
251
316
319
323
Mediumno.
172
160
163
165
157
Largeno.
29
26
27
25
26
Very largeno.
6
7
8
9
10
Totalno.
563
554
667
694
687
Internet Access Lines(b)(c)
Dial-up no.
-
-
626,554
623,839
658,555
Non dial-upno.
-
-
680,933
850,506
1,300,359
Total no.
639,197
857,470
1,307,487
1,474,345
1,958,914
Subscribers(b)(c)
Dial-up
Business and government'000
-
520
505
499
524
Household '000
-
4,087
4,017
3,859
3,916
Total'000
-
4,607
4,522
4,359
4,441
Non dial-up
Business and government'000
-
139
190
241
321
Household '000
-
331
499
620
979
Total '000
-
470
690
861
1,300
Total
Business and government'000
650
659
696
740
846
Household '000
3,904
4,417
4,516
4,480
4,895
Total'000
4,555
5,076
5,211
5,220
5,741
Data Downloaded(c)(d)
Dial-up
Business and governmentmillion MBs
-
-
178
137
253
Household million MBs
-
-
1,341
1,457
1,465
Totalmillion MBs
-
-
1,520
1,594
1,718
Non dial-up
Business and government million MBs
-
-
1,169
1,294
2,307
Household million MBs
-
-
1,976
3,521
6,979
Totalmillion MBs
-
-
3,145
4,815
9,287
Total
Business and government million MBs
740
782
1,347
1,431
2,560
Household million MBs
2,172
2,264
3,317
4,978
8,444
Totalmillion MBs
2,913
3,046
4,665
6,409
11,004

- nil or rounded to zero (including null cells)
(a) See paragraph 6 of the Explanatory Notes for a description of ISP size categories.
(b) As at the end of the reference quarter.
(c) The collection of separate access technology details commenced from the March quarter 2003 for subscribers and from the September quarter 2003 for Internet access lines and data downloaded.
(d) During the three months up to the reference date, also refered to as the reference quarter.

Internet Activity Summary(a), states and territories

September Quarter 2004
ISPs(b)
Access lines(b)
All subscribers(b)
Data downloaded(c)
no.
no.
'000
million MBs

New South Wales
256
667,338
1,935
3,603
Victoria
213
520,398
1,565
2,925
Queensland
174
347,658
1,026
1,789
South Australia
61
121,458
413
655
Western Australia
88
199,435
519
1,367
Tasmania
23
36,999
111
231
Northern Territory
13
11,633
32
51
Australian Capital Territory
34
53,995
140
318
Australia
687
1,958,914
5,741
11,004

(a) Based on state or territory of operations, not Head Office location.
(b) As at the reference date.
(c) During the three months up to the reference date, also refered to as the reference quarter.

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