8146.0 - Household Use of Information Technology, Australia, 2001-02  
ARCHIVED ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 10/09/2003   
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September 10, 2003
Embargoed 11:30am (AEST)

Home internet use continues to rise

The number of Australians accessing the Internet at home has steadily increased since 1998, rising from 13% of adults to 43% in 2002 according to figures released today by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS).

Access to the Internet and use of computers is highest in younger age groups, decreasing with age, and is higher in metropolitan areas.
While the percentage of Australian adults using the Internet anywhere continued to rise in 2002, access to computers appears to have stabilised. Internet use rose from 54% of adults to 58% between 2001 and 2002, building on the strong rise from 1998 when only 31% of adults used the Internet.

In 2002, the Internet was used by 23% of adults to pay bills or transfer funds (up from 17% in 2001), 21% of adults to access government services (up from 16% in 2001) and 15% of adults shopped via the Internet (up from 11% in 2001).

The number of Internet shoppers has increased by 34% since 2001 and the amount they spent also grew markedly. The percentage of shoppers spending up to $500 via the Internet decreased from 61% in 2001 to 46% in 2002, while those who spent over $1,000 increased from 19% in 2001 to 34% in 2002. Internet shoppers spent around $1.9 billion in 2001, compared to at least $4 billion in 2002.

Travel/accommodation was the most common purchase via the Internet.

Further details are in Household Use of Information Technology, Australia (cat. no. 8146.0)