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8147.0 - Use of the Internet by Householders, Australia, Nov 1998  
Previous ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 01/03/1999   
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MEDIA RELEASE

March 1, 1999
Embargoed: 11:30 AM (AEST)
26/99

Use of internet by householders - ABS

Figures released today by the Australian Bureau of Statistics show that in November 1998, an estimated 1,272,000 households (19% of all households) had access to the Internet from home. This is an increase of 49% over the number of households with home Internet access in February 1998.

According to the report, in the 12 months to November 1998, nearly 4.2 million adults (31% of Australia's total adult population) accessed the Internet. The most frequently reported sites for Internet access were work (1.9 million persons ), home (1.7 million), a neighbour's or friend's house (1.1 million) and TAFE or tertiary institutions (0.8 million). Of the adults accessing the Internet from work, nearly 78% frequently used it from that site (once a week or more).

Only 7% of adults who accessed the Internet in the 12 months to November 1998 reported using the Internet for shopping. This is only 2% of all Australian adults.

The survey showed that as a mechanism to pay bills or transfer funds, the Internet was not significant compared to the use of EFTPOS, the telephone or an ATM for similar purposes. Less than 1% of adult Australians had used the Internet in the three months to November
1998 to pay bills or transfer funds. During this same period nearly 36% of adults (4.8 million) had used a telephone to pay bills or transfer funds, 61% (8.2 million) had used EFTPOS and 68% (9.3 million) had used an ATM.

At November 1998, 410,000 adults (5% of all employed adults) were able to access an employer's computer from home through a modem. An estimated 312,000 of these (76%) had a teleworking agreement with their employer. The number of persons in a teleworking arrangement had increased by 128% from the February estimate of 137,000 persons.

Details are in
Use of Internet by Householders, Australia, November 1998 (cat. no. 8147.0) which is available from ABS Bookshops. Main features of the publication are available from this site.

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